• Najib: BN Government Make Changes, Not Empty Promises

    Reporter: Dayyan Mikhail
    Published: Wednesday, 11 April 2018
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    KOTA BARU: The Barisan Nasional (BN) never makes empty promises but instead, makes the necessary changes for the development of the country, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak said.

    He said the construction of the East Coast Rail Link (ECRL) proved that the government was sincere in fulfilling its promises.

    Describing the ECRL project as a game changer, the prime minister said it would create an estimated 80,000 jobs while the gross domestic product (GDP) of Kelantan, Terengganu and Pahang was expected to increase by 1.5 per cent.

    “We don’t sell promises, we actually make changes. ECRL is the proof that the government does bring development (to the nation).

    “Anywhere in the world, an efficient and reliable rail link can bring big development to the state and the country and in this case, it will connect several states,” he said in his speech at the ground breaking event for the ECRL here today.

    Also present were International Trade and Industry Minister Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed, Transport Minister Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai and Secretary General of Treasury Tan Sri Dr Mohd Irwan Serigar.

    At a cost of RM55 billion, the construction of the 688-km ECRL is in line with the federal government’s national infrastructure initiative to link cities and upgrade public transport in rural areas.

    Najib further added that the ECRL project wouldl see 44 tunnels created, starting from Pahang to Kelantan.

    “We don’t sell promises, we actually make changes. ECRL is the proof that the government does bring development (to the nation,” said Najib.

    On top of that, he said, by end of the year, 14,000 jobs will be available where 70 per cent of the jobs will specifically be offered to Malaysians, not foreigners as alleged by the opposition.

    “Now the distance from Kuala Lumpur to Kota Baru will take us eight hours but with the ECRL’s speed of 160km/hour, it will be shortened to just four hours.

    “Not only that, this project will lead to reverse migration, which means the Kelantan youth do not have to migrate to other states to seek opportunities because they will have plenty here with this project.”

    He added that the government had also appointed 237 consultants comprising local companies only.

    The prime minister also pointed out that, although the project had yet to be completed, the land prices in Kota Baru has already spiked.

    “I was told that the land prices has increased. How much was the price before? Now it has reached RM1 million and this project is not completed yet. Imagine when it’s completed, it might reach up to RM5 million.

    “I hope this project will be completed ahead of schedule so that the future of Kelantan can be guaranteed,” he added.

    The ECRL comprises two phases, with Phase 1 stretching about 600.3km of track from Kota Baru, Kelantan to the Integrated Transport Terminal (ITT) Gombak, Selangor.

    Phase 2 has an addition of approximately 88km of track, involving a northern extension (Kota Baru-Wakaf Baru-Pengkalan Kubor) in Kelantan and a southern extension (Gombak North-Serendah-Port Klang) in Selangor.-NST

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