KUALA LAMPUR: Dr Ong Kian Ming, Malaysian Deputy Minister of International Trade and Industry has said that the East Coast Rail Link (ECRL) can be one of the test cases for China’s ambitious Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) to test its financing and long term risk mitigation. He said that Malaysia has renegotiated with the Chinese government on the ECRL and how the project can be financially viable and sustainable in the long run.

Speaking at the Belt and Road Economics Report-Opportunities and Risks of Transport Corridors, Dr Ming said that according to the memorandum of agreement signed between Malaysian Investment Development Authority and China Communication Construction Ltd., the turnkey contractor has the obligation to build the full infrastructure. He further said that in addition to this, the contractor is also obligated to construct transit-oriented development for the stations along the ECRL as well as to build logistics hub for these stations so that the entire ecosystem of the ECRL can be enhanced. He said that this will ensure that passenger and cargo movement along the ECRL is smooth.

Dr Ming added that there is a need to ensure that supportive policies and capacity building for the project are in place in both the countries, involving not only the turnkey contractor but other stakeholders too.

Source: The Sun Daily