The Economic Planning Unit of Malaysia has released the 12th Malaysia Plan (2021-2025), which aims to boost national productivity, facilitate economic growth, and enhance people’s well-being by strengthening the transport and logistics industry’s competitiveness and governance. In particular, the report highlighted that Malaysia aspires to become a transport and logistics center in Southeast Asia by 2025.
Among the 12MP’s initiatives are enhancing efficiency and leveraging digitization in transport and logistic services, which will help to improve cargo-handling procedures, increase cargo volume, and improve trade. This will also help to raise the capacity of ports infrastructure and services, improve last-mile connectivity, encourage multimodal cargo movement, upgrade the aviation system, and implement preventive maintenance of roads and bridges.
Furthermore, logistics connection between rail, sea, and air will be strengthened in order to position Malaysia as a vibrant cargo hub, with the logistics industry urged to adopt a multimodal cargo movement strategy to increase logistics services capacity and lower distribution costs. The 12MP report highlighted that Ubiquitous Customs (uCustoms), a single-window transaction platform, will be fully operationalized to increase the convenience of doing business by offering a web-based, electronic end-to-end solution.
In addition to having information on greening the transportation sector, a centralized database for the transport and logistics sectors will be developed, which will include a comprehensive layered map and statistics pertaining to roads, rail, aviation, and maritime services. Efforts will also be undertaken by the government to strengthen the institutional and regulatory frameworks, as well as enhance governance and support green initiatives.
In terms of public transportation, the accessibility will be increased by integrating multiple modes of transportation and supporting transit-oriented development (TOD), which will help to reduce reliance on private automobiles, boost productivity, improve reliability and promote comfort as well as people’s well-being. The efficiency and connection of public transportation will be further maximized by increasing the frequency of feeder buses and reconfiguration of the routes. The first- and last-mile connectivity strategy will also include the integration between e-hailing services with MRT and other modes of transportation.
Other than that, the use of micromobility vehicles will be promoted, and pedestrian lanes in metropolitan areas will be improved to increase user safety and confidence while also encouraging active mobility. A ‘dial-a-ride system,’ a phone-based facility that provides door-to-door service for those who do not have access to regular public transportation, is one alternative that will be examined.
As emphasized in 12MP, between 2021 and 2025, the government anticipates a 5% yearly rise in public transportation usage in the Klang Valley and Greater Klang Valley, as well as a 20% rise in air transport passengers. It also wants to boost freight volume by 10% via rail in the northern, central, and southern parts of the country. In the longer term, the government aims to be in the top 10 of the World Container Ports Report and the top 30 of the World Bank Logistics Performance Index, in line with the key measures to make the transportation and logistics business more competitive.
(Sources: Astro Awani; The Edge Markets; The Star Online)