No changes to ECRL project so far, says envoy

China’s Ambassador to Malaysia, Bai Tian. (File pic)

KUALA LUMPUR: No changes have been made to the East Coast Rail Line (ECRL) project so far, said China’s Ambassador to Malaysia, Bai Tian, today.

He said the project had started and was running smoothly, with its main contractor, China Communications Construction Company Ltd working closely with its owner, Malaysia Rail Link Sdn Bhd.

“As far as I know, there are no changes in ECRL project,” he told reporters after visiting the National Zoo to see the second cub of the giant panda couple, Xing Xing and Liang Liang, at the Giant Panda Conservation Centre.

The new Pakatan Harapan-led federal government has vowed to review all foreign mega projects to help reduce the nation’s expenditure as well as debts.

One of those projects could be the 688km ECRL which links Port Klang and Kota Bharu, at an estimated cost of RM55 billion. It is scheduled for completion in 2024.

Bai said he had called on the Prime Minister, Dr Mahathir Mohamad, on Thursday and Mahathir had assured him of wider prospects for cooperation between Malaysia and China.

“We feel that Malaysia’s new government has placed importance on the Malaysia-China relationship and there are many possibilities. We are confident that Malaysia and China will have greater development,” he said.

He added that Malaysia-China ties would continue to flourish under the new government.

Bai said both China and Malaysia have enjoyed good bilateral relations over the past 44 years, including the 22 years (1981-2003) when Dr Mahathir was first Prime Minister.

He said the good ties would continue to be maintained regardless of changes in both countries or globally.