Malaysian Government starts crowdfunding to help reduce the country's staggering debt

Mahathir Bin Mohamad

A spokesperson added: "We look forward to further developing the Kuala Lumpur-Singapore high-speed rail under the new Malaysian Government as an opportunity to accelerate inclusive growth and maximise socio-economic benefits for the seven cities along the [high-speed rail] corridor as well as improve living standards for all Malaysians".

The absence of the rail connection will make the district less attractive to businesses as well as Malaysians who could have used the HSR to commute into Singapore to work, said International Property Advisor chief executive Ku Swee Yong said.

On May 12, the Malaysian government's delivery vehicle for the high-speed project, MyHSR, released a statement congratulating Mahathir Mohamad on being sworn in as the country's seventh prime minister.

Malaysia past year filed a review of that ruling, but the ICJ on Wednesday said Mahathir had withdrawn that application put in by the government of the defeated former prime minister Najib Razak.

"We had agreed to proceed with the HSR project based on mutual benefits and obligations set out in the HSR bilateral agreement", she said, adding that the ministry will wait for official communication from Malaysia. But of course, why we cancelled the project is because of affordability.

Mahathir said the HSR was not the only muilti-billion dollar project that would likely be cancelled. The project never took off.

Chinese companies were seen as having a high chance of landing a chunk of the project as ties had warmed with Malaysia under Najib.

According to Channel NewsAsia, Mahathir said the government made a decision to cancel HSR, considering its high financial implications, subject to discussion with the Singapore government.

Malaysia's Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad speaks beside Deputy Prime Minister Wan Azizah Wan Ismail during a news conference after a weekly cabinet meeting in Putrajaya, Malaysia in a still image taken from a Reuters TV footage on May 30, 2018.

Dr Mahathir had said the HSR project is "unnecessary and will not earn the country a single sen".

The Facebook page of the powerful Sultan of Johor - Malaysia's southernmost state bordering Singapore - previous year published a video of a tiny maritime facility built on Middle Rock.

"After knowing the full extent of the government's total debts, it is prudent to call off the HSR and other mega projects", he said.

The 350-km HSR project with the Singapore portion covering 15 km - was scheduled to be completed by 2026.

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