1. Malaysia’s Land Public Transport Commission (SPAD) and Singapore’s Land Transport Authority (LTA) welcome today's signing of the Bilateral Agreement between the Government of the Republic of Singapore and the Government of Malaysia on the Johor Bahru-Singapore Rapid Transit System Link (RTS Link) by H.E. Datuk Seri Abdul Rahman Dahlan, Malaysia’s Minister in the Prime Minister's Department and by H.E. Minister Khaw Boon Wan, Singapore’s Coordinating Minister for Infrastructure and Minister for Transport. The signing ceremony, which was witnessed by Malaysia’s Prime Minister The Honourable Dato’ Sri Mohd Najib Tun Abdul Razak and Singapore’s Prime Minister The Honourable Lee Hsien Loong, signifies Malaysia and Singapore’s firm commitment to this important project that will benefit both countries.
2. The Bilateral Agreement is the outcome of extensive discussions led by officials from the Land Public Transport Commission (SPAD) of Malaysia and Ministry of Transport and Land Transport Authority of Singapore. It captures the key points of agreement on the RTS Link project, including the technical, safety and security requirements, commercial, financing, procurement and regulatory frameworks, as well as customs, immigration and quarantine arrangements.
3. The RTS Link will have the capacity to carry up to 10,000 passengers per hour per direction, which translates to additional capacity of 60,000 users crossing the Causeway during peak hours. To facilitate passenger flow, it will have co-located Custom, Immigration and Quarantine (CIQ) facilities in both Bukit Chagar and Woodlands North. Passengers travelling in either direction will clear both Malaysia and Singapore authorities at the point of departure, and need not go through immigration clearance again at the point of arrival. The RTS Link’s capacity of 10,000 passengers per hour per direction (pphpd) is much higher than the average 300 (pphpd) that the Keretapi Tanah Melayu Berhad’s (KTMB) Tebrau Shuttle is ferrying today. The KTMB Tebrau Shuttle services to Singapore will cease six months after the RTS Link passenger service begins, targeted by December 2024.
4. The RTS Link will cross the Straits of Johor via a 25m-high bridge, linking the Bukit Chagar Station in Johor Bahru to the RTS Link Woodlands North Station in Singapore to (See Annex A). For economies of scale, the RTS Link will utilise the same four core systems (trains, signalling system, communications system, and Integrated Supervisory Control System) as Singapore’s upcoming Thomson-East Coast Line (TEL). Heavy maintenance will be outsourced to the TEL Operator – SMRT Trains - at the TEL’s Mandai Depot, though there will also be a light maintenance facility at Bukit Chagar.
5. Each country will appoint an Infrastructure Company (InfraCo) to fund, build, own, maintain, and renew the civil infrastructure and stations within their respective territories. Malaysia’s InfraCo will be Prasarana Malaysia Berhad, while Singapore’s InfraCo will be LTA. Both Governments will jointly appoint an operating company (OpCo) to own, design, build, finance, operate, maintain and renew the RTS Link’s operating assets (e.g. trains, tracks, systems). The OpCo will pay a concession fee to the two countries in exchange for the right to collect fare revenue from operating the RTS Link (See Annex B for the relationship between the RTS Link entities). Fares will be set commercially by the OpCo, and will not be regulated by the two Governments.
6. Both Governments agree that for the first concession period, which will cover the first 30 years of operations, the OpCo will be a joint venture between a Malaysian company and a Singaporean company. Both Governments welcomed the exchange of letters between the Malaysian Prime Minister’s Department, Prasarana Malaysia Berhad, LTA, and SMRT Corporation Ltd, recording their commitment for Prasarana and SMRT to form a Joint Venture (JV) Company to be the OpCo for the first concession period. The companies have committed to incorporate the JV by 30 June 2018, and to sign the concession agreement by 30 September 2018. Subsequent concessions will be awarded through open tender.
Annex A: RTS link stations
Annex B: Relationship between RTS link entities