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Saturday, December 18, 2010

MRT project to generate billion$ in GNI

The implementation of the mass rapid transit (MRT) project in the Klang Valley is expected to generate a Gross National Income (GNI) of between RM3 billion and RM4 billion beginning next year until 2020, said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.

He said between RM8 billion and RM12 billion was expected to be generated in terms of spinoffs from the construction of the MRT project.

"RM21 billion in GNI incremental impact is anticipated to be generated in 2020 from the value appreciation of the project and increase in productivity rate," Najib told a press conference at the Royal Malaysian Air Force base in Subang before his departure to Kuala Terengganu for a one-day official visit.

The Prime Minister said the Cabinet had approved the implementation of the MRT project at its weekly meeting on Friday.

The MRT, the largest infrastructure project in Malaysia, is an economic entry point project identified for the Greater Kuala Lumpur/Klang Valley National Key Economic Area under the Economic Transformation Programme.

Najib also said the MRT project would generate 130,000 jobs during the duration of its construction which was expected to commence July next year and be complete in five to six years.

Once operational, the MRT will first ply the Sungai Buloh to Kajang route via the Kuala Lumpur city centre.

"The travel distance is about 60km and 35 MRT stations will be built along that route. Integrated stations would be built in locations where the MRT overlaps KTM Commuter, Kelana Jaya and Ampang Light Rail Transit (LRT) routes," he explained.

The Sungai Buloh-Kajang MRT will provide efficient train service to 1.2 million people, he said, adding that it would serve densely populated Kota Damansara, Mutiara Damansara, Bandar Utama, Taman Tun Dr Ismail, Bukit Damansara, Cheras, Bandar Tun Hussein Onn and Balakong.

Najib also said more than 400,000 commuters would benefit from the Sungai Buloh-Kajang MRT service daily.

The routes and locations for the MRT have yet to be finalised and value management studies would be conducted taking into account the optimum utilisation rate and maximum real estate realisation value.

As such, he said the actual project cost can only be determined once the value management studies are completed.

"The entire cost of building the project is being fine-tuned. Initial estimates made in 2009 placed the figure at about RM36 billion but this was subject to changes," Najib said.

The Prime Minister said the final cost of the project would depend on factors such as the awarding of contracts through open tender, the escalating cost of raw materials and others.

The Prime Minister also added the government decided on kicking off the project with the Sungai Buloh-Kajang route as this corridor did not have adequate rail transport service.

Indepth studies were also carried out on this route which was proposed by Syarikat Prasarana Negara Bhd in 2008 and by MMC-Gamuda Joint Venture Sdn Bhd recently.

The Sungai Buloh-Kajang MRT will built under phase one of the MRT network in the Klang Valley.

Future routes to be developed gradually over several stages have been proposed and is being studied under the Urban Public Transportation Masterplan, he said.

Asked if any new entry points projects would be unveiled, Najib said several projects would be announced in January.

By Bernama

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