Japanese authorities are stepping up its sales pitch for the shinkansen bullet train in Singapore, hoping to acquire an edge in its crucial bid for the Malaysia-Singapore high speed rail project.
This strategic decision came just two days after the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MOU) on the Singapore-Kuala Lumpur High Speed Rail (HSR) project.
Japanese Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism Minister Keiichi Ishii met top officials in Malaysia including Singapore Senior Minister of State for Transport Josephine Teo to discuss the matter.
A Japanese news agency quoted Ishii saying, "Japan's private and public sectors are trying very hard to have a high-speed railway that adopts the shinkansen technology to be run here in Singapore."
Internal sources reported that the minister stressed on Japan's track record on safety during this meetings.
According to Ishii, Japan's bullet trains have clear advantages in terms of safety and reliability and the system can be offered at low costs not only initially but also for maintenance over its total life cycle.
Meanwhile, executive vice president of East Japan Railway Co, Yuji Fukasawa told the gathering that a shinkansen system could start commercial operations as early as in seven years.