ISKANDAR PUTERI: The Ministry of Finance (MOF) will consider an immediate allocation of RM45.5 million to upgrade the Customs, Immigration and Quarantine (CIQ) Complex at the Sultan Iskandar Building (BSI) to address congestion.

Deputy Finance Minister I Datuk Seri Ahmad Maslan (pix) said the approval for the allocation will be considered after the application is submitted through MOF, Economic Planning Unit (EPU), and several agencies including the National Budget Office (NBO).

Ahmad, who is also one of the committee members representing MOF in the Special Cabinet Committee, said four things that need to be improved and that there is a need to implement them immediately to solve the congestion on the country's entry route.

“Today, I would like to follow up and see for myself what MOF can help to ensure the implementation of the relevant decisions and what I can help on consideration for a specific request for allocation,“ he told reporters after visiting the complex today.

Ahmad said he hoped the allocation could be approved this year because the congestion was seen as a major problem

The Pontian MP explained that the funds will be used to improve access to the waiting area for heavy import and export vehicles, to combine and build a covered shed for inbound and outbound buses, and to provide facilities for passengers, drivers and tourists such as cafes, surau and toilets.

In addition, he said the allocation also includes the establishment of a contra route, which is the opening of 12 lanes.

“This existing contra route from Singapore to Malaysia is open on weekends, holidays or festive seasons, from 24 lanes to 36 lanes to overcome the congestion from Singapore to Malaysia.

“However, this contra route cannot yet be implemented for the route from Malaysia to Singapore because there is a landscape that needs to be moved.

“We hope after the allocation is approved, all projects will start this year, and be completed next year,“ he said. -Bernama