Ismail Sabri: ECRL fares to be affordable

BENTONG: Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob today dismissed claims that the fare for the East Coast Rail Link (ECRL) will be high.

He said he has asked the Transport Ministry to discuss with the relevant parties to come up with a people-friendly fare for the ride.

“I saw some claims made in social media that the fares will be high. This is not true.

“I have asked the Transport Ministry to discuss with stakeholders to formulate a very affordable ECRL service fare rate such as the people-friendly Keretapi Tanah Melayu (KTM) Electric Train Service (ETS) fare rate,” he said in his speech during the launch ceremony at the Genting Tunnel site here today.

He said that ECRL would have 20 stations — 10 passenger stations and the rest combined passenger and cargo stations — connecting cities, towns and industrial parks more effectively as well as improving the public transport system in rural areas.

Moving at a speed of 160kph, the ECRL will also connect the Light Rail Transit (LRT) Kelana Jaya line at the Gombak Integrated Transport Terminal (IIT Gombak), thus reducing travel time to Kota Baru to four hours compared to the average of seven hours by road.

The ECRL line will also connect with KTMB services at three interchange stations — Temerloh in Pahang, and Serendah and Jalan Kastam in Selangor.

Ismail Sabri said the inclusion of “Pintasan Serendah” as part of the scope of the ECRL project for KTMB services would complete the establishment of a national cargo hub or transhipment hub in Serendah.

“ECRL will offer a more modern, safe, and efficient transportation link to the East Coast.

“ECRL and KTMB services will also form an integrated rail line linking the Northern Corridor Economic Region and Penang Port, East Coast Economic Region and Kuantan Port, as well as Iskandar Malaysia and Tanjung Pelepas Port in the south,” he said.

Present at the event were Transport Minister Datuk Seri Dr Wee Ka Siong; Finance Minister Tengku Datuk Seri Zafrul Tengku Abdul Aziz; Chinese ambassador to Malaysia Ouyang Yujing; Pahang Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Wan Rosdy Wan Ismail; and, Kelantan Menteri Besar Datuk Ahmad Yakob.

Also present were Malaysia Rail Link Sdn Bhd (MRL) chairman Tan Sri Mohd Zuki Ali; MRL chief executive officer Datuk Seri Darwis Abdul Razak; China Communications Construction Company Ltd (CCCC) vice-president Sun Ziyu; and China Communications Construction (ECRL) Sdn Bhd (CCCECRL) managing director Kong Qi.

The ECRL Project involves the construction of an electrified rail network linking Kelantan, Terengganu, and Pahang with the Klang Valley. The construction is scheduled to be completed by December 2026.

The ECRL will be driven by a revenue ratio of 70 per cent freight services and 30 per cent passenger services when operational in January 2027.

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