As a next step, a joint project team will call for an international tender next month to appoint a development partner to provide technical support to both countries on the project.
The memorandum of understanding (MOU) reflects the outcome of extensive discussions between officials led by the Ministry of Transport and the Land Public Transport Commission (SPAD) of Malaysia, and the Ministry of Transport and Land Transport Authority of Singapore, since the project was first announced by the prime ministers in February 2013.
The MOU captures the key points of agreement on the project, including the technical parameters, commercial model, customs, immigration & quarantine (CIQ) clearance, safety & security matters, the regulatory framework as well as project management. Please refer to Annex A for the highlights.
The aim is that it will guide the development of a legally-binding bilateral agreement to be signed by both governments towards the end of this year. It also reiterates the governments’ commitment to ensure that all project tenders are conducted in an open, fair and transparent manner, so as to encourage participation from technology and service providers worldwide.
Both Governments agreed that each will take responsibility for developing, constructing and maintaining the civil infrastructure and stations within their own countries. Through international tenders, an assets company will be appointed to provide and maintain the trains and its associated systems while two train operating companies will be appointed to operate the services.
The HSR will have eight stations – the termini in Bandar Malaysia and Singapore, and six intermediate stations in Putrajaya, Seremban, Ayer Keroh, Muar, Batu Pahat and Iskandar Puteri. The trains will run at a top speed of more than 300km/h.
Both governments agreed to work towards beginning high-speed rail operations by around 2026.