Comments: Singapore, The Kra Canal and Malaysia...

Perhaps a contour map will give you a clearer picture why it is not feasible. It is same to the Thais. The "neck" that connect Malaysia and Thailand looks like a shorter router, but you must cut through the mountain.

The Kra-canal that utilise the exising water ways is lay between the two countries border. That's is why the proposal drafted on such location. But there is many issues to be resolved.

1. The sea level between the South China Sea and Melaka strait.
2. Relocation of people between the border
3. Weight of the the ship passing through the canal.
3. Maintenance

Technically it is possible to build it, but is it feasible?
i. How much will it cost
ii.How to raise the building capital?
iii. How much will you charge for the tol?
iv. How long the repayment period?
v. How much is the runnig cost?

This is not SIMCITY.

Posted by Moo at July 22, 2003 08:36 PM

:) I concur, and I might have put the black line in the wrong place, now that I think about it.

Let us for awhile assume that it can be done. Mind you, somebody in the Thai government must think it can be done for they currently have a panel studying it's feasibility. (The has been brought up time and again and yes, this could be just one of the panels, but it's a panel nevertheless.)

The feasibility issues that you raised in your comment are issues that can be solved. They are man made issues that usually can be resolved if there is enough political will.Mind you, this is not a new project, and there is already precedence created with similar projects elsewhere.

I'm not so worried about the physical issues that the building of the Kra Canal can create. I'm more worried about the political issues. Issues like:

  1. Will Lee Kuan Yew sit back and allow such a project to destroy Singapore's economy?
  2. What will the indonesians think? How will they be affected socially and economy?
  3. Will this herald the destruction of ASEAN as we currently know it and will South East Asia be thrown into war to prevent this project from being carried out.
  4. Assuming Malaysia is not involved and Thailand decide to foot the whole project themselves, what will our government do?

Interesting issues to be considered in my opinion.

Posted by Suresh Gnasegarah at July 22, 2003 09:08 PM

Isthmus of Kra: that was my favorite geographical feature in the world, when I was in eighth grade. It makes one sound important just to say it: The Isthmus of Kra. Just thought I'd mention that; carry on...

Posted by Bin Gregory at July 23, 2003 01:58 AM

There is another angle to this Kra Canal project. CHINA!

China is keen to get involved in this project because of their need and interest to hasten the shipping line directly to China. And they have the money.

And i doubt singapore is anywhere "big" enough to fight china on this. Malaysia should get involved directly with this project and link up by road and rail to the canal to utilize it. Then we can withdraw our hopeless train station in Tanjong Pagar and cut off the rail way line to Singapore.

Posted by keriso at July 23, 2003 02:06 AM

Ahhhh so much power to screw Singapore over :).

Well, worse come to the worse, they'll beg us to rejoin the federation. And when that happens, I'll be laughing my ass off.

70% of the Human body consist of Water.
Singaporeans drink Malaysian water.
Therefore 70% of every Singaporean is Malaysian. Hah!


Posted by Suresh Gnasegarah at July 23, 2003 11:27 AM

I have raise up the project feasibility a few time. It is nice to talk about the canal but I don't it is realistic. It doesn't add much value to the region. Singapore might lost 50% of its Ports income, but Malaysia and Thailand will suffered from shit load of debt.

1. Water gate must be installed for various location to cater the water level issue. So it will be "sail - gate close - stop - toll by tug boat - wait for water filllup/drained - sail - stop and..."

2. Preparation for the 2 Moonson seasons. To prevent excessive water flow into the canal, some water buffer must be installed.

3. Capacity of the canal. Should it cater for a super tanker?

4. Estimation of cargo ship will utilise the canal

5. Disaster prevention. E.g. ship wreck, oil spills, fires.

If the canal tols is not economically justify, the freighter will continue to use Straight of Melacca.

The Suez canal is sit in another geography region. The Africa continent route is 50x the distance of Straight of Melacca. Since more than 60% of Asia export is going to America, it is not realistic for Japan and China to take a share in the project, except getting contract to build the canal.

If anyone want to ship the goods faster, they can always use plane.

Posted by Moo at July 23, 2003 07:11 PM

as a singaporean, all i have to say is if it happens at all, given the feasibility discussions above, as long as it happens AFTER I'm dead and gone which is to say the average time it'll take for the thai and malaysian governments to get their collective asses moving), I'm happy... :)

Posted by Vani at July 24, 2003 01:23 PM

If the bumis haf anyting to do wif it, it will be a f'g disater. Tink of MAS .... Twin Towers ... the water coytract. Ha ha ha go on bumis jus try it.

Posted by Chi at August 2, 2003 06:52 AM

The line (canal) on the map is way too far south. It wouldn't even touch Malaysia.

Posted by caughtintheact at August 16, 2003 03:32 PM

The line (canal) on the map is way too far south. The canal will not cut across Malaysian territory at all. Wonder where this idea came from?

Posted by caughtintheact at August 16, 2003 03:33 PM

Thai-Malaysia canal? You mean Thai canal.

Building a Thai-Malaysia canal would be an even greater waste of money than building the "half-bridge" to replace part of the Singapore-Johor causeway.

The shortest route will definitely not be through the Thai-Malaysia border area. That's even longer than the original Kra route. The route peple talk about is somewhere in between. Starting in Songkhla in the East.

It may be be built some day. But the time it will take to get the financing, the plans, the construction etc. It will be years ( ac ouple of decades?) before it is completed and ships sail through it.

Singapore is not that worried. How many ships will actually use it? 90% of those currently using the Straits? 80%? 70% Not every ship wants to pay the Thai Canal toll. Also, the time savings can probably be only a around a couple of days. Does every ship passing through the Straits really need to say a couple of days?

In addition, the Thai Canal is really for shipping from Europe, Middle-east, India heading for China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Korea and Japan and vice versa. Shipping to and from Indonesia, Australia and New Zealand will not use the Thai Canal.

No. Singaporeans aren't worried about the Thai Canal. What they are is simly perplexed at the "Crush Singapore" attitude of many Malaysians whipped up by some Malaysian politicians and the media. Thank goodness the idiocy (e.g. Thai-Malaysia canal) of these people and their ideas do not get far.

Posted by Lim of Singapore at August 18, 2003 10:39 AM
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