KUALA LUMPUR: The government plans to invest RM450 million to acquire up to 500 electric buses of various sizes for public transport in selected cities nationwide.
Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng in presenting the 2020 Budget themed Driving Growth and Equitable Outcomes towards Shared Prosperity, said the effort reflected the Pakatan Harapan government’s commitment to improve public transport and create cleaner and greener cities.
In the meantime, he said the monthly passes of My50 and My100 providing unlimited travel on all RapidKL rail and bus services launched earlier this year benefited over 120,000 public transport users.
“The government has also launched Pas Mutiara in Penang which provides unlimited travel for a month at a price of RM50 on Rapid Buses and Rapid Ferry,” he said at the Dewan Rakyat here today.
Meanwhile, for the convenience of the rural population, he said the government would continue to support the last-mile connectivity in rural and urban areas by subsidising bus operators with an allocation of RM146 million in 2020.
In addition, the government will be upgrading the rail tracks from Gorge Line between Halogilat Station and Tenom Station in Sabah at a cost of RM50 million.
“This will enhance travelling convenience for locals while providing a memorable experience for tourists,” he said.
To ease congestion at the Johor Baru Causeway and Second Link, the Government will allocate RM85 million beginning 2020, towards enhancing vehicle and traffic flow through the Customs, Immigration and Quarantine Complex (CIQ).
He explained the allocation would facilitate the opening of 50 additional counters for motorcyclists and the streamlining of immigration and PLUS highway counters.
“As part of a long-term solution to address the congestion problem, the government intends to proceed with the Rapid Transit System (RTS) between Johor Baru and Singapore,” he added.
Meanwhile, to reduce the burden of highway tolls, Lim said the Cabinet was considering proposals including those from Khazanah Nasional Berhad, to acquire or dispose of all PLUS Malaysia Berhad shares.
He said in line with the Pakatan Harapan manifesto, the people could enjoy a minimum reduction of average toll charges by 18% discount across all PLUS highways and the proposals received must have a positive fiscal impact and not increase the present debt burden or government debt service charges.
“At the same time, the 18% discount on toll charges for the North South Highway will save highway users up to RM1,130 million in 2020, and RM43 billion over the entire concession period until 2038,” said Lim. — Bernama