Singapore “protest” against Malaysia port plan

Singapore Singapore claims the Johor Bahru Port extension would encroach on Singapore Territorial Waters (STW) off Tuas on the Singapore Strait. Credit: Google Maps

The Government of Singapore has lodged a “strong protest with the Malaysian Government following the latter’s publication of a plan to extend the Johor Bahru Port which it says encroaches into Singapore Territorial Waters (STW) off Tuas on the Singapore Strait.

Singapore’s Ministry of Transport (MOT) said the government has asked the Malaysian Government to change its plans and “refrain from taking any further unilateral action”, while the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) has instructed ship masters and owners of vessels to disregard Malaysia’s published documentation on the project.

The MOT said: “Singapore has lodged strong protest with the Malaysian Government.”

It stated vessels from the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency and Marine Department Malaysia have also repeatedly intruded into STW off Tuas and Singapore is prepared to take action against intrusions and unauthorised activities in its waters.

“Malaysia’s purported extension of the Johor Bahru port limits and the repeated intrusions by Malaysian Government Vessels into STW are a serious violation of Singapore’s sovereignty and international law,” the MOT stressed.

It has requested that Malaysia amend the Gazette Notification, PC 88/2018 and NtM 164/2018 to reflect Singapore’s rule over the waters in question.

Malaysia's transport minister, Anthony Loke Siew Fook, called Singapore's claims inaccurate, saying the altered port limits had not encroached any part of the city state.

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