KUALA LUMPUR — March 12, 2019: Based on the selling price of water to Singapore under the 1962 agreement, the republic has so far been receiving water subsidy worth at least RM2.4 billion or about RM100,000 a day.
In replying to Datuk Seri Dr. Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar (GPS-Santubong) today, Foreign Minister Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah also criticised his Singaporean counterpart Vivian Balakrishnan for criticising Malaysia’s move to review the agreement by insisting that Malaysia had lost its right to review the price of water after it chose not to do so in 1987.
“Clause 14 of the agreement says that it shall be subject to review after the expiry of 25 years from the date it is signed and not on the 25th year.
“So I don’t understand what English is used by the Singaporean foreign minister to interpret it in such a manner. We honour the agreement, that is why we say we can review the agreement after 25 years,” said Saifuddin.
He also replied to Siti Zailah Mohd. Yusoff’s (PAS-Rantau Panjang) to say that Malaysia is prepared to refer the case for international arbitration if negotiations with Singapore fail.
The water deal issue resurfaced in the middle of last year when Prime Minister Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad described the price of raw water sold to Singapore as unreasonable and that he planned to renegotiate the terms.
“We should have been in the second phase right now where we look at price modality and what time periods for the price modality and related matters can be achieved,” Saifuddin said.
The deal which ends in 2061 entitles Singapore to receive up to 250 million gallons a day (mgd) of raw water from Johor. Singapore pays 3 sen for every 1,000 gallons of raw water and resells treated water to Johor at 50 sen for every 1,000 gallons.
Johor obtains a daily supply of treated water up to 2.0 per cent or 5.0 mgd of raw water supplied to the city-state. — Bernama