KL-Kuala Selangor Expressway Berhad (KLSEB) is the concessionaire for the KL-Kuala Selangor Expressway (LATAR Expressway). The Company, formerly known as Lebuhraya Assamjawa Taman Rimba Bhd (‘LATAR’), was incorporated in 1996. At that time, the shareholding was 60% held by Bina Puri Holdings Bhd and 40% held by Arena Irama Sdn Bhd.
Construction of the LATAR KL-Kuala Selangor Expressway commenced in 2008 when a supplemental concession agreement was signed on 28 February 2008 with the Ministry of Works representing the Government of Malaysia.
Subsequently, Bina Puri Holdings Bhd reduced its stake in KLSEB to 50% while Arena Irama Sdn Bhd increased its stake to 50%. The Company achieved financial close in October 2008 with a total of RM1.04 billion loan from Bank Pembangunan Malaysia and the Islamic Development Bank.
The Company has a 40-year concession on the LATAR Expressway. The concession was awarded on a Build-Operate-Transfer (BOT) scheme in which the Company is responsible to finance, design, construct, operate and maintain the expressway.
Following the construction of the North-South Expressway, and the perceived success of privatisation, a study commissioned by JICA (Japan International Cooperation Agency) identified further infrastructure development projects, attracting the attention of a number of private entities, including KL-Kuala Selangor Expressway Berhad (KLSEB).
On 10 November 1997, KLSEB was awarded the Concession Agreement to build the Kuala Lumpur – Kuala Selangor Expressway (LATAR Expressway). This is a privatisation project by the Government under the Build-Operate- Transfer (BOT) system in which the concessionaire, KLSEB, undertakes the responsibility to finance, design, construct, operate and maintain the expressway for 40 years. But as a consequence of the Asian financial crisis, the project was stalled, along with other mega-projects and only later revived in 2003-2004.
Despite the difficulties in reviving a project of this magnitude, a comprehensive review was completed. With a renewed project viability, a Supplementary Concession Agreement was signed in February 2008. The mission to build the LATAR Expresssway came with a condition: KLSEB were required to supply documentary evidence to prove funding was in place within twelve months of the issue of the Supplementary Concession Agreement. This was achieved by September 2008 and the green light was given, commencing October 2008 for 40 years, with a construction period of 3 years.
Fortunately, with the assistance of the Malaysian Highway Authority (MHA), the land acquisition process had begun in 2007. By the time construction started, more than 70% of land had been purchased. This produced an added attraction for KLSEB: turnkey contractors bidding for this project would be required to complete the construction within 30 months, as opposed to 36 months. Indeed, the LATAR Expressway is completing five months ahead of schedule.