Malaysia's road system is extensive and
is among the finest in Asia. It covers a distance of 63,445
km. Excellent local and long distance bus, taxi cab and
tourist coach services operate throughout the country. The
total number of vehicles, registered at the end of 1990 was
about 5.2 million.
The interurban North-South Expressway,
New Klang Valley Expressway (NKVE) and the Federal Highway
Route 2 (FHR2) are the largest road transportation
infrastructure in Peninsula Malaysia. The 848 km expressway
links major industrial areas and urban centers in the
country commencing from Bukit Kayu Hitam in the northern
Kedah State to Johor Bahru in the state of Johor in the
The East-West Highway serves as part of
the Asian Highway System linking Thailand with Malaysia. The
completed portion covers 115 km.
Improvements in road infrastructure and
extensive road network coupled with increases in population
and income levels had resulted in an increase in the
ownership of motorvehicles. In 1993, there were 5.4 million
motorvehicles of which 38.6% were motorcars, 54.8%
motorcycles and 6.6% goods vehicles. This increased by 50.5%
to reach 8.1 million motorvehicles in 1997, with motorcycles
accounting for 53% of the total, followed by motorcars 40%
and goods vehicles 7%. The number of motorvehicles per 100
population, which is an indicator of the quality of life of
the population, increased from 27.6 in 1993 to 37.6 in 1997.
Concern over the traffic congestion problems and increased
number of road accidents arising from the increased private
vehicles usage has led to measures to create an efficient
and reliable urban transport system.
The government is focussed on the
further development of an efficient and integrated public
transport system. Currently, buses, taxis, trains and
airplanes represent the major modes of transportation, be it
inter or intra city/towns. The number of buses have
increased from 29,929 in 1993 to 41,912 in 1997 while the
number of taxis, hire and drive cars increased from 44.040
in 1993 to 66,573 in 1997. To improve the quality,
efficiency and reliability of the bus and taxi services,
several measures have been taken, such as amalgamation of
transport companies, route rationalisation, provision of
supporting facilities such as terminals, depots, signages
and route information system.
Rail passenger traffic, namely the
intercity passenger services, was 6.5 million in 1993. But
this decreased to 5.4 million in 1997 due to the
availability of other modes of faster transport services.
The total number of air passengers however increased from
22.8 million in 1993 to 30.5 million in 1997, partly
accounted for by domestic and regional expansion of
To facilitate intercity transportation,
the rail has also been developed as an alternative regional
commuter system. This includes the KTM commuter for regional
operations and LRT II for metropolitan operations.