Photo of Mahathir with Lee Hsien Loong from AFP

According to a complaint by the Singapore Ministry of Transport, Malaysia has still not arranged a meeting date over the High Speed Rail (HSR) project. Although Malaysia’s Foreign Minister came to Singapore earlier this Monday (Jul 30), the Malaysian Minister did not come for the HSR discussion. The Singapore government has earlier last week demanded that a meeting be held on Tuesday (Jul 31), which has since been ignored.

In his interview to the media, the Malaysia Foreign Minister said that the water price and High Speed Rail negotiations will have to be negotiated:

“The HSR and water issues were raised during my meeting with Dr Balakrishnan and Mr Lee (Lee Hsien Loong). I tried my level best to explain the situation. We are looking at the big picture … As far as our bilateral relations (are concerned) … our ties are strong and we want to work hard to bring it to greater heights…

On the 1962 water agreement, I had underlined the fact that there could be a review as this was stated in the agreement. There is a clause about a review that surely we can look at. I understand that Singapore has its own perspective. They brought the issue of water treatment. I think proposals and counter proposals can be brought to the table when we have a proper discussion. There were discussions in the past but there was no progress. Surely we can continue the discussion. The agreement says the content of the agreement can be reviewed after 25 years. It doesn’t mean at 25 years … so we can continue talking.”

The statement prompted an immediate response from the Singapore Ministry of Foreign Affairs, which insisted that the last water price negotiation was in 1987 and Malaysia has “lost its rights” to negotiate. The Transport Ministry then immediately repeated its call for a meeting over the HSR.

Following the “hard-ball” response from the Singapore government, Malaysia then stopped responding to its request for a date to discuss the HSR.

Diplomatic relations with Malaysia has nose-dived since the new Malaysian government found Singapore to be deeply involved in the money laundering of stolen Malaysian state funds 1MDB. Malaysia Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad has earlier expressed hope that Singaporeans would similarly remove the Lee Hsien Loong dictatorship, as Malaysians did against Najib Razak.

Singapore is currently facing hundreds of millions of losses this year alone over the stalled project development of the High Speed Rail. Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong did not believe his corrupted partner Najib Razak would lose the election, and proceeded ahead of schedule the development plan for the High Speed Rail. The foolish Prime Minister did not have a backup plan, and now over 62 hectares of land is sitting idle awaiting a formal decision on the HSR.

For breaking the HSR contract, Malaysia would have to pay a penalty of US$125 million. The Singapore Transport Minister however threatened to charge Malaysia more for compensation. Malaysia, already in a trillion RM debt due to corruptions from its former Prime Minister, then announced that they will postpone the project indefinitely so they would not need pay the compensation.