PETALING JAYA: Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad has said there will be a need for the high-speed rail (HSR) project with Singapore, but the country cannot afford it now.
He told Japan's Nikkei Asian Review that Malaysia would benefit greatly from such a project.
"So we actually postponed the implementation of that project," he was quoted as saying.
"High-speed trains are most effective where the distance is very long. But where the distance is short, it doesn't contribute much.
"So we need to rethink high-speed rail. We cannot say we will never have high-speed rail in Malaysia. What we can do is we can postpone the project because it is far too costly at this moment.
In the interview with the Japan daily, Mahathir said that while a high-speed rail would be useful in the future, its cost of RM110 billion was too high at a time when the government was trying to reduce the country's RM1 trillion debt.