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China to fund 85% of Malaysia’s revived rail project

Posted at 9:13 PM, Jul 24, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-25 00:13:21-04

DUNGUN, Malaysia (AP) — Malaysia’s Transport Minister Loke Siew Fook says China’s Export-Import Bank is expected to finance 85% of a 44 billion ringgit ($10.7 billion) rail link project that will bolster economic development in rural eastern states.

The East Coast Rail Link was suspended a year ago shortly after Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad won a historic election, but the government said in April it will revive it after the Chinese contractor agreed to slash cost by a third. The project connects Malaysia’s west coast to poorer eastern states and is a key part of China’s Belt and Road infrastructure initiative.

At a ceremony in northeast Terengganu state Thursday to relaunch the project, Loke said Malaysia is expected to sign the financing agreement with China’s EXIM Bank soon but didn’t give further details.