PUTRAJAYA, 15 June: The East Coast Rail Line (ECRL) project will not only serve as a game-changer to boost the country’s economy but will also act as a “mindset changer” for those living in the rural areas in the east coast states.
In stating this, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Abdul Razak said this could be seen when he attended a programme in Bachok, Kelantan a few months back.
He said the people in Bachok were excited to see that a modern and sophisticated train system would be made available in their area.
“When I saw their expression after seeing the modern train, I knew that the project will not only become a game-changer but also a mindset changer,” he said.
“The project will open up the mind of those in the rural areas there that the modern era has arrived for the east coast,” he said in his speech at the opening ceremony of ECRL Industrial Project Training at the Finance Ministry.
The RM55 billion ECRL project, announced by Najib last year, involves the construction of a 600km railway line connecting Klang Valley to the east coast.
Najib said based on studies, the three east coast states of Pahang, Terengganu and Kelantan would experience an additional growth of 1.5% when ECRL is completed.
“With this, the east coast will become a more attractive and competitive regional development area,” he added.
Najib said the mega project was slated to bridge the economical divide between the east and west coast of Peninsula Malaysia.
“If we want to attract investments, one of its prerequisites is connectivity. ECRL will connect the east coast to other areas such as Port Klang,” he said.
The event saw Malaysia Rail Link (MRL) launching the training programme as well as the exchange of Memoranda of Understanding (MoU) documents with China Communications and Construction Company (CCCC) and public universities.
This was to pave the way for industry-academia collaborations for the programme to provide upskilling of local graduates to be employable by ECRL contractors and the railway industry.
— THE SUN