ERL keen to bid for KL-S’pore link

express linkSEPANG: Express Rail Link Sdn Bhd (ERL), the operator of KLIA Ekspres and KLIA Transit train services, is keen to bid for the Kuala Lumpur-Singapore High-Speed Rail (HSR) project, saying it is a good candidate with the capabilities and technical know-how.

Its chief executive officer, Noormah Mohd Nor, said this was based on ERL’s proven track record of delivering projects as well as being the only company in the country operating the high-speed train.

“Technically, we have delivered the 57km ERL project from KL Sentral to Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA), and the extention to KLIA2, which was completed ahead of the schedule and within the budget.

“It’s not as simple as running a normal train project. We already have the expertise and the maintenance is all done internally.

“Once the government, or Land Public Transport Commission (SPAD), has come out with the tender, rest assured we will be one of the keen bidders,” she said.

She said this to reporters after a site visit to KLIA2 by SPAD chairman Syed Hamid Syed Jaafar Albar, along with the Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd senior general manager (Operations Services) Azmi Murad, here today.

Meanwhile, Noormah said, ERL planned to buy an additional four sets of trains to support the transit operation following the commencement of KLIA2 which would definitely increase the volume of commuters.

Currently, ERL has 12 train sets – eight KLIA Ekspres and four KLIA Transit.

“We have spoken and invited bids from Europe as well as China, and it’s in the final stage.

“Hopefully, we can conclude the bids within two months and it will take about 23 months for the train to be delivered,” she said, adding the costs were still under discussion,” she said.

Noormah said the company has proposed extending the rail link to Seremban and Malacca in order to serve passengers outside Kuala Lumpur.

“It’s a proposal and the government should consider,” she said.

Noormah said the company has no plan to list on Bursa Malaysia at the moment but “will study the proposal”.

“As for now, we will look at how well we serve the public when the train goes to KLIA2 as well as the growth that it will provide to the company,” she said.

Both KLIA Ekspress and KLIA Transit will start commercial operations on May 2, together with the opening of theKLIA2 terminal.

The first 1,000 visitors will be given free return tickets for travel from KL Sentral to KLIA2 on a first come-first-serve-basis, available from the website only.

– Bernama