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Undersea tunnel feasibility study not fully completed - Chow

GEORGE TOWN, Aug 25 (Bernama) -- The feasibility study for Penang undersea tunnel project is still not ready as it is now 90 per cent completed, said Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow.

He said at the moment, the draft report is still being examined by independent consultant engineers appointed by HSS Engineers Bhd.

"Once everything is cleared from the consultant's part, it will be submitted to the state government for approval. It is always a to-and-fro process, once they (Consortium Zenith Construction Sdn Bhd) submitted to HSSI, HSSI will review and comment before it is given back to them to improve.

"It is still at 90 over per cent, and the state is progressively receiving updates," he told reporters after attending a 2019 National Day celebration opening ceremony by Toh Puan Majimor Shariff, wife of Penang Yang Dipertua Negeri, Tun Abdul Rahman Abbas.

The 7.2-km long tunnel linking Persiaran Gurney to Bagan Ajam in Seberang Perai is under the Penang Transport Master Plan (PTMP).

The PTMP costing RM46 billion is an initiative of the state government encompassing the undersea tunnel connecting the island to the mainland, highways, LRT, monorail, as well as a comprehensive network of bus routes covering parts of the island and the mainland.

Meanwhile, when asked about the statement of Transport Minister Anthony Loke Siew Fook recently which stated the commitment to upgrade the Penang ferry service including a plan to introduce a cataraman -like boat to complement the tunnel, Chow said no decision was made was made at the moment.

“There was no other decision except the feasibility study. But the tunnel is not a priority, the priority is the highway from Air Itam to Tun Dr Lim Chong Eu Highway, we hope to start in two months,” he said.

In another statement on the report of a Chinese daily on the difference in price of a new CBU Toyota Camry bought by the Penang government with those bought by Perak, Chow said Penang was not given tax exemption.

“There is no tax exemption, so we bought them at market price, Perak may have obtain it (tax exemption). That is why the price is different,” he said.


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