The World Bank (WB) estimated that Kuala Lumpur, the capital of Malaysia, losses up to 20 billion RM or 5.4 billion USD annually due to road congestion on the streets.

The WB’s “Economic Monitor” annual report on Malaysia’s economic prospects said “including the costs of fuel wasted and the economic cost of carbon dioxide and other emissions, the total cost of congestion in greater Kuala Lumpur is estimated conservatively at 1.1 – 2.2 percent of GPD in 2014.”

“These estimates do not account for the reduction in subjective well-being with commuting”, it added.

The WB described urbanisation as the key driver of the nation’s success in economic growth and poverty reduction but growing challenges in urban mobility threaten to dampen the benefits of urbanisation. Nearly three quarters of its population live in cities today, compared to only 46 percent in 1985.

Urban migration has boosted productivity and access to economic opportunities and helped raise income levels and reduce poverty.

Road congestion in Malaysian cities is increasing despite sufficient availability of public transit options as an alternative to car use as public satisfaction with available public transport services remain low.-VNA