Since its independence in 1957, Malaysia has experienced rapid growth from a rural, agrarian state to a modern, industrialised nation. This is evidenced by key indicators such as GDP growth, trade and per capita income, all of which have seen dramatic improvements. Despite the challenges brought about by global events such as the 2008 global economic crisis Malaysia remains firmly on track to realise its dream of becoming a high income nation.

Malaysia’s growth has been underpinned by its transport sector. Malaysia has constructed over 200,000 km of roads, over 2,900 km of rail as well as 18 ports and 22 airports which form the backbone of Malaysia’s growth as a key player in the South East Asian and global markets.

As the nation continues to develop, it is critical to ensure that it has an overarching transport policy that can support our ambitions to be a high-income nation by 2025 based on its strong and sustainable growth.

The National Transport Policy (NTP) was developed through close collaboration between the government and private sector. Since September 2016, over 150 members from the government, academia and representatives of the private sector convened in a series of workshops, focus group discussions and meetings.

The NTP was developed with the following objectives:

Create a conducive ecosystem for the transport industry to enhance productivity and competitiveness

Facilitate seamless movement of goods to boost trading activities and ease of doing business

Provide mobility that meets the expectations of people and promotes inclusivity

Increase modal share for public transport

Deliver an intelligent, safe and secure transport system

Ensure efficient and sustainable use of resources and minimise environmental pollution

Malaysia’s transport sector represents a critical enabler for its socio- economic development. The efficiency of a nation’s transportation system directly correlates to trade and economic growth. In 2017, the transportation and storage subsector contributed 3.6% to GDP with a value of RM48.8 billion, and 6.6% to the services sector value-added. This subsector grew at an average rate of 5.6% per annum between 2005-2017 and is projected to grow at 8.9% or more going forward.

Malaysia has continuously built and upgraded its transport network by developing the road and rail arteries to support the mobility of people and goods. World class ports and airports such as KLIA and Port Klang have been built to support business and trade activities. Malaysia occupies a vital position along the Straits of Malacca, one of the most important shipping lanes in the world linking major Asian economies such as India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, China, Japan, Taiwan and South Korea. It is estimated that close to 100,000 vessels pass through the strait each year making it the busiest strait in the world, carrying an estimated 25% of the world’s traded goods.

In addition, Malaysia’s geographical position and strength in infrastructure make it a natural gateway to South East Asia. In 2016, Malaysia is ranked 18th out of 140 countries in the World Economic Forum’s Global Competitiveness Report, the highest of all developing economies in Asia. Similarly, Port Klang ranked 11th in the world in terms of TEU handling in 2016 whereas PTP is ranked 19th whilst KLIA ranked 24th in the world in 2016 in terms of total passenger handled, with 52.6 million passengers.

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