Naim-Gamuda JV Sdn Bhd has emerged as a strong front runner to design and build Kuching's first ever Light Rail Transit or LRT system, having publicly confirmed their interest to participate in this potential megaproject. Naim-Gamuda JV is a joint venture company in Sarawak between local player Naim Holdings Berhad and the Peninsula-based Gamuda Berhad, with the latter coming fresh off the completion of the much lauded MRT system in the Klang Valley. Naim-Gamuda are currently involved in a RM1.57 billion total works package for the proposed Pan Borneo Highway.
Gamuda Engineering Sdn Bhd executive director Szeto Wai Loong expressed his confidence in their capabilities to execute such an undertaking for the Sarawak government. "For Kuching, we can provide the full range of services from LRT alignment planning to ridership projection, all the way to the calculation of the project's economic internal rate of return as well as the cost-benefit ratio," Szeto told The Star. "By calculating all these, we can determine which system to use. As Kuching is very big, we can design and build in phases" he added.
Companies from China had previously expressed their interest in the LRT project. During a forum in Kuching in April, China's consul general in Kuching Fu Jijun declared China's willingness to lend their expertise. "Chief Minister of Sarawak Abang Johari had recently proposed to build an LRT system to connect Kuching, Samarahan and Serian. Chinese companies are experienced in building railways and can offer professional help once the Chief Minister makes a decision," said Fu. "Once the Chief Minister decides to build the light railways, and work with Chinese companies, I believe it will not take a long time to complete the project" Fu added.