Rafizi: MRT already costs double Spain, South Korea projects

People taking advantage of the Christmas holiday to catch a free ride on the Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) Phase One line from the Sungai Buloh station to Damansara, December 25, 2016. — Bernama pic

People taking advantage of the Christmas holiday to catch a free ride on the Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) Phase One line from the Sungai Buloh station to Damansara, December 25, 2016. — Bernama pic

SUNGAI BESI, Dec 27 — The RM21 billion cost announced so far for the Klang Valley Mass Rapid Transport (MRT) would mean that the project is already more than twice as expensive as similar projects in Spain and South Korea in the same period, PKR’s Rafizi Ramli said today.

Rafizi said the amount would mean that the 51km project already costs US$103 million per km, compared to US$39 million per km for the 5.8km Barcelona Sants-La Sagrera line built between 2008 and 2011, and US$43 million per km for the 27km Seoul Line 9 completed in 2009.

“The cost of MRT Phase 1 which has been completed is 2.5 times the price of the projects in Barcelona and Seoul, when both those projects are fully under ground and the MRT1 from Sungai Buloh to Kajang only has nine stations,” the Pandan MP told the press here.

Last week, MRT Corp said the final cost of the entire MRT project has yet to be finalised, amid Rafizi’s claim that it would exceed RM100 billion.

While the cost for the Sungai Buloh-Kajang (SBK) line has been announced by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak to be RM21 billion, RM2 billion lesser than its initial estimated cost, MRT Corp said the estimated construction cost for the second line, the Sungai Buloh-Serdang-Putrajaya (SSP), was RM32 billion.

Rafizi had claimed that the cost of the whole MRT project would exceed RM100 billion, alleging that the MRT2 and MRT3 lines would each cost at least RM50 billion.

The PKR vice-president claimed that his statement was based on news reports that quoted MRT’s corporate strategic communications director Najmuddin Abdullah as saying so. The first phase of the SBK line, which connects Semantan and Sungai Buloh, is currently offered for free to riders for a month after its service commenced last Friday. – Malay Mail Online

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