PUTRAJAYA: The Cabinet will decide on the proposed takeover of PLUS Malaysia Bhd and four other highways by next week.
The government has received five offers for PLUS, the country’s largest highway operator, managing over 1,100km of highway.
Speaking to reporters after closing the Literacy in Financial Technology (LIFT) Festival in Putrajaya today, Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng said that since the government implemented a freeze on toll hikes last December, it has to act quickly to avoid paying hefty compensations.
“There will be a Cabinet decision made by next week.
“Since we are freezing toll hikes, we need to come up with a decision quickly or else the clock will keep ticking and compensation will keep mounting,” he said.
Earlier this month, Works Minister Baru Bian said the Cabinet had requested a re-tabling of the details on the takeover bids as Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad wanted a systematic review before a decision was made.
Lim said the finance ministry worked alongside government-owned Khazanah Nasional Bhd, the Employees Provident Fund (EPF) and other ministries for one of the bids.
The joint Khazanah-EPF proposal would see a minimum reduction in tolls of 18% which, he said, showed the Pakatan Harapan administration was serious in fulfilling its election promise of abolishing tolls gradually.
PH had pledged to reduce toll rates in stages, he said, adding that “this will be an important first step to show progress”.