11,900 into Singapore and 50,000 out into Iskandar everyday.

I waited for over an hour for a friend when I was in Singapore one month ago. She apologised profusely when she arrived saying the jam was bad. Area was Bugis. I always thought that in Singapore not many people would drive. To my surprise, I found out a lot of them actually drive in the evening because the ERP stops after 8pm. I have also wanted to drive into SIngapore and I felt that I should be quite special because not many Malaysian cars would be in Singapore. I think I may be wrong again. On a daily basis on weekdays, 11,900 foreign registered cars enter Singapore and on the weekends, 13,600 cars. The free entry for these cars start only from 5pm and soon, it may start from 7pm. Majority of these cars would not be going to the newer suburbs. Thus I know why my friend was late for nearly 40 minutes from her estimation. All of these cars would be concentrated on the popular areas only. Shopping, business, romance, who knows but jams are happening!
The most significant about this number is that considering each car carries 2 passengers, that’s additional 24,000 Malaysians travelling into Singapore on a daily basis. As for Singaporean cars travelling into JB, that’s 50,000 on a daily basis. That’s a minimum of 100,000 travellers into Malaysia. Irregardless of the reasons for their travel today, within the next few years, their reasons will most likely be increasing and so would be the number. The number of Malaysian cars travelling into Singapore may not change that much but the number of cars from Singapore into JB would definitely increase. On a weekend, besides the casinos which the Singaporeans cannot travel to, the closest place for a family trip is JB or Iskandar. For leisure, for business or even a vacation in their newly purchased condominium complete with swimming pools and all other facilities. Come on, let’s get real, for the weekends, not many Singaporeans would want to stay and watch TV in their HDB flats, especially if going to JB becomes faster and easier plus some of them actually own a condo which is cheaper than their HDB flats.
I always believe that with a higher integration between both sides, it would benefit both countries. This is different from some of the arguments on which side would benefit more with another link, with the upcoming High Speed Rail etc. When I was in Osaka a few years ago, I was informed that just between the ‘old’ Osaka and the ‘new’ Osaka, there were eight links! Development does not happen to any place without people. People cannot travel if there are no links to link them to that place. The current two links between Johor and Iskandar is definitely not enough and at best, just a beginning. More needs to happen. There’s no way Singapore can continue to grow by just relying on within. there’s also no way that Iskandar can be successful without a strong participation from Singapore. We should all remember that. 🙂
written on 15 Nov 2014
Next suggested article: Iskandar: Car wash business down because of new toll increase.


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