Malaysia has paid Singapore RM320.27 million ($102.8 million) for the costs incurred for the cancelled Kuala Lumpur-Singapore High-Speed Rail (HSR) project’s development as well as for the extension of its suspension.
This comes after Malaysia and Singapore reached an amicable agreement on the compensation amount, after a verification process made by Malaysia, reported Bernama.
In a joint statement issued on Monday (29 March 2021), Malaysia’s Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Economy) and Singapore’s Minister for Transport said the amount represents a final and full settlement in relation to the bilateral agreement’s termination on 31 December 2020.
They added that the two countries remain committed to maintaining good relations as well as fostering close cooperation for the mutual benefit of the peoples of both countries.
In responding to queries on the difference between the $270 million spent by Singapore on the project and the amount paid by Malaysia, Singapore’s Ministry of Transport explained that the $270 million included land acquisition cost.
The ministry said it is not seeking compensation for the land acquisition cost since it can still be recovered by the government.
“For example, one piece of land acquired will be used to develop the Integrated Train Testing Centre, which broke ground recently,” said the ministry’s spokesperson as quoted by Bernama.
The ministry added that the bulk of the $102 million compensation was determined and computed when Singapore agreed to Malaysia’s request to suspend the project.
Singapore’s Minister for Transport Ong Ye Kung previously said that the city-state had spent over $270 million on the HSR project.
“Some of these costs, such as for consultancy services, design of infrastructure, and manpower to deliver the project, are abortive costs if the project does not proceed,” he said in Parliament.