KTM Berhad

KTM Berhad Logo

KTM Berhad, also known as Keretapi Tanah Melayu Berhad (KTMB), is a renowned Malaysian rail operator that has played a pivotal role in the country’s transportation landscape. KTMB in its current corporate structure is a Government-linked Company (GLC) that was incorporated from 1991 Railway Act.This article will delve into the rich history of KTM Berhad, tracing its roots and highlighting its significant contributions. Furthermore, we will explore the comprehensive range of services provided by KTM Berhad, showcasing its commitment to serving the nation’s transportation needs.

Services Provided by KTM Berhad

KTM Berhad operates an extensive network of rail services that cater to diverse needs and destinations across Malaysia. Let’s explore the various services offered by the company:

KTM Intercity: KTM Berhad’s intercity trains connect major cities and towns, offering comfortable and efficient long-distance travel options. Passengers can enjoy amenities such as spacious seating, onboard refreshments, and air-conditioning, ensuring a pleasant journey.

Electric Train Services (ETS): The ETS provides fast and convenient transportation between key cities, including Kuala Lumpur, Penang, and Ipoh. These high-speed trains offer a premium travel experience, featuring modern coaches, comfortable seating, and advanced safety systems.

KTM Komuter: KTM Berhad’s Komuter trains cater to daily commuters, facilitating seamless travel within metropolitan areas such as Kuala Lumpur, Klang Valley, and Seremban. These services are designed to alleviate traffic congestion, offering affordable fares and frequent departures.

KTM Kargo: KTM Berhad also plays a crucial role in the transportation of goods and cargo across the country. Its freight services enable businesses to efficiently transport their products, contributing to the overall economic development of Malaysia.

Tourist Train Services: Recognizing the allure of Malaysia’s scenic landscapes, KTM Berhad operates special tourist trains, such as the Eastern and Oriental Express, which provide luxury travel experiences for tourists seeking to explore the country in style.

KTM Berhad Customer Service

You can reach out to KTM Berhad using the following communication channels:

Phone number (call center): +60 3 2267 1200

E-mail: [email protected]

Website: https://www.ktmb.com.my

Facebook page (https://web.facebook.com/ktmberhad): As of 8 May 2020, their Facebook page has 131,062 likes and 146,385 followers.

Twitter (https://twitter.com/ktm_berhad): As of 8 May 2020, their Twitter page has more than 49,700 followers.

Instagram (https://www.instagram.com/ktmbofficial): As of 8 May 2020, their Instagram page has over 33,300 followers and 2,207 posts.

YouTube (https://www.youtube.com/KTMBRailChannel): As of 8 May 2020, their YouTube page has 756 subscribers. The first video was posted on 14 July 2019.

First video posted on KTMB YouTube page

Origins and Historical Background

KTM Berhad has a fascinating history that dates back to its establishment in 1885 during the British colonial era. Originally known as the Federated Malay States Railways (FMSR), the railway system primarily served to transport tin ore from the mines to the ports. Over the years, the railway network expanded and played an essential role in facilitating trade and commerce across the Malaysian peninsula.

1869The earliest proposals to build a railway through Singapore was put up by engineer W. J. du Port at an estimated cost of $200,000. However, a trade slump resulted in the project being shelved.
1871Another proposal by the Tanjong Pagar Dock Company was put forward to the Governor of the Straits Settlements but public opinion was against the use of public funds for private interests.
1874Sir Andrew Clarke announced his support for the construction of a railway for private use.
1881First lokomotive FMSR N0 1
1885The first section of the Malayan Railway was a seven and a half mile track, opened between Taiping and Port Weld, serving the main mining area in Larut. Service began on 1 February 1885, lasting until 1941.
1886First Kuala Lumpur Station known as Kuala Lumpur and was located near Market Street opened in 19 September 1886.
The next section opened was the 21-mile run between Kuala Lumpur and Klang River (Bukit Kuda),Residen Station was built within this line.
1888July 1888 first train crash in the country occurred in Sungai Kerawai near Teluk Anson, Perak.
18904 November 1890 – Opening Keretapi Sungei Ujong Railway line.
6 May 1890 – Opening section Taiping – Kamunting.
15 September 1890 – Opening section Klang River – Klang.
1891July 1891 – Opening section between Sungei Ujung (Seremban) – Port Dickson
Three 0-6-2T locomotives (later FMSR Class J) built for the Sungei Ujong Railway in 1891.
18921 July 1892 -Opening section Kamunting – Ulu Sepetang.
7 November 1892 – Opening section Kuala Lumpur – Batu Junction – Rawang.
1893 19 May 1893 – Opening section Teluk Anson.
1st June 1893 – Second railway building in Kuala Lumpur Sultan Street station was opened
1 June 1893 – Opening section Kuala Lumpur – Pudu.
10 July 1893 – Opening section Rawang – Serendah.
6 September 1893 – Opening section Tapah Road.
17 October 1893 – Opening section Batu Gajah – Ipoh.
1894Elephant derailed a train (Teluk Intan).
27 April 1894 – Opening section Kota Bharu – Batu Gajah.
Opening section Parit Jawa – Sungai Pulai.
29 September 1894 – Opening section Tapah Road – Talam.
6 October 1894 – Opening section Serendah – Kuala Kubu.
1895Elephant derailed a train (Teluk Intan).
1 March 1895 – Opening section Pudu – Sungei Besi.
18 March 1895 – Opening section Talam – Kampar.
1 May 1895 – Opening section Kampar – Kota Bharu.
1896The British created Federated Malay States Railway (FMSR), followed by the joining up of the initial four major lines built : Taiping – Port Weld , KL – Klang, Port Swettenham extension line, Seremban–Port Dickson line.
1 June 1896 – Opening section Ipoh – Tanjong Rambutan.
27 November 1896 – Opening section Tanjong Rambutan – Chemor.
18975 July 1897 – Opening section Chemor – Sungei Siput.
14 August 1897 – Opening section Sungei Besi – Kajang.
18981 July 1898 – Opening section Sungei Siput – Enggor.
18991 January, the extension from Klang to Port Swettenham, nearly 5 miles, was opened for passenger traffic. Terminus of the railway, on Klang Straits, and extensive wharves have been constructed.
1 July 1899- Opening section Prai Bukit – Mertajam.
1 September 1899 – Opening section Ulu Sepetang – Pondok Tanjong.
1 November 1899 – Opening section Krian River – Bagan Serai.
Frank Swettenham had planned to connect the FMSR from Prai to Singapore passing through Johor.
Construction of railway line between Gemas and Johor begin.
A single 4-4-2 tank locomotive (later FMSR Class K) built for the Sungei Ujong Railway.
19001 August 1900 – Opening section Kuala Kubu – Kalumpang
1 September 1900 – Opening section Bukit Mertajam – Nibong Tebal
15 September 1900 – Opening section Enggor – Kuala Kangsar
1 November 1900 – Opening section Perak boundary – Tanjong Malim
1 November 1900 – Opening section Kalumpang – Tanjong Malik
The main backbone of railway tracks linked Penang (Prai) to Seremban.
Opening of the Victoria Railway Bridge across Perak River in Perak.
1952KTM introduce AWT to guard railway service from communist.
1957The English Electric Class 20 was the first main line diesel loco to be introduced to Malaya.
1963Port Klang Authority was established on 1 July 1963, taking over the administration of Port Klang from the Malayan Railway Administration.
196511 Nov 1965 : A six mile-long branch was added to the Singapore line, spanning Jurong and Bukit Timah.
1967Construction of Penang Swing Bridge and opened by Duli Yang Maha Mulia Seri Paduka Baginda Tuanku Ismail Nasiruddin Shah Ibni Almarhum Sultan Zainal Abidin Shah – 14 September 1967.
1965Class 21 locomotive was delivered in 2 batches, the first in 1965 and the second in 1968.
1971KTM intoduced Class 22 locomotive.
1977KTMB had started a weekend train service to Port Dickson on June 1, 1977, due to public requests but discontinued the service several years later because of poor response.
1983KTM introduced Class 23 locomotive.
1987KTM introduced Class 24 locomotive.
1988Rehabilitation of 327 Kms. track from Paloh to Singpore & from Slim River to Seremban (1988-1994) – US$ 70 million.
1990Arriving Class 25 (25101 – 25112) locomotive from General Motors, Ontario, Canada .
Double tracking of Rawang – Seremban railway line (1990- 1994)
1991Double tracking of KL – Port Klang railway line (including spur line to Subang and Sentul (1991-1994)
21 Sep 1991 : Railway Act 1991 was tabled and approved by Parliament.
19921 Aug 1992 – KTM Berhad is corporatised under the Malaysian Railway Act of 1991 although it remains wholly-owned by the Malaysian government.
1993Sep 1993 – The Eastern Oriental Express becomes the first train service to take passengers from Singapore and Kuala Lumpur to Bangkok.
Changes in immigration policies in 1993 when the immigration checkpoint at Tanjong Pagar was moved to Woodlands railway station.
Government approved the construction of new electrified railway system for KTMB Commuter Services.
1994Widening of railway tunnel near Seremban (1994-1995)
The first electrified train system known as Electrified Multiple Unit (EMU) is bought in. 18 set EMU class 81 was bought from manufacturer Janbacher Transport, Austria /Hungary.
The Government awarded the contract to build KL Sentral integrated railway station to a concession company KL Semasa Sentral Sdn Bhd consist of MRCB group in consortium with KTMB.
19953 August 1995 – The first KTM Komuter trains began taking passengers between Kuala Lumpur and Rawang. Free trips were offered until 11 August 1995.
 14 August 1995 – Commercial operations begin for the KTM Komuter between Kuala Lumpur and Rawang. It was then extended to Salak South on 29 September 1995.
 28 August 1995 – Operations between Sentul and Shah Alam began. Service was extended to Klang on 29 September 1995.
20 November 1995 – The Rawang-Kuala Lumpur service extended to Kajang.
18 December 1995 – Entire KTM Komuter network opened with final stretch to Seremban opened.
EMU Class 81 to serve commuters
28 August 1995 – Operations between Sentul and Shah Alam began. Service was extended to Klang on 29 September 1995.
20 November 1995 – The Rawang-Kuala Lumpur service extended to Kajang.
18 December 1995 – Entire KTM Komuter network opened with final stretch to Seremban opened.
EMU Class 81 to serve commuters
  • KTMB leased 39 of YDM-4 locomotives from India.
  • Introduced Class 82 EMU.
  • Introduced Class 83 EMU.
  • Track linking from Port Klang to Pulau Indah (1997-1999)
  • Construction of Pelabuhan Tanjung Pelepas – Johor rail link (1999- 2002)
19011 May 1901 – Opening section Bagan Serai – Alor Pongsu.
1 July 1901 – Opening section Kuala Kangsar – Padang Rengas.
July 1901 – 12 Class A locomotives originally assigned for both the Perak Railway and Selangor Railway.
Two pairs of 4-6-0 locomotives built for the Selangor Railway became FMSR class D when they were taken over by the FMSR in July 1901. .
A pair of 4-6-0 locomotives built for the Perak Railway became FMSR Class E when they were taken over in July 1901.
A pair of 4-4-0 locomotives built for the Selangor Railway became F class when taken over by the FMSR in July 1901.
19021 February 1902 – Opening section Alor Pongsu – Pondok Tanjong
1 May 1902 – Opening section Taiping Bukit – Gantang
1 May 1902 – Opening section Tapah Road – Bidor
1 May 1902 – Opening section Nibong Tebal – Krian River
14 June 1902 – Opening section Kajang – Bangi
19031 Jan 1903 – The Singapore-Kranji Railway line was announced completed. The section from Tank Road to Bukit Timah was opened.
1 February 1903 – Opening section Bangi – Batang Benar.
2 April 1903 – Opening section Batang Benar – Seremban.
10 Apr 1903 – The Woodlands extension was completed. The first passenger trains began transporting travelers to Bukit Timah Station.
15 July 1903 – Opening section Bukit Bantang – Padang Rengas.
15 July 1903 – Opening section Bidor – Sungkai.
15 July 1903 – Opening section Slim River – Tanjong Malik.
15 August 1903 -Opening section Sungkai Slim – River.
Railway line between Perai – Seremban complete.
Line between Tank Road and Woodlands in Singapore opened for service.
19041st Disember Tampin – Melaka line opened for service
190515 July 1905 – Opening section Seremban – Tampin
1 December 1905 – Opening section Tampin – Malacca Town
1 December 1905 – Opening section Batu Road – Batu Caves
19061 October 1906 – Opening section Tampin – Gemas.
190721 Jan 1907 – The extension to Pasir Panjang was completed.
Sixty engines of the Class H being built between 1907 – 1914
1908The first batch of 5 Class I were delivered from Kitson in 1908.
1 March 1908 – opening section Gemas – Segamat
Keretapi Sungei Ujong was purchase by FMSR in Julai 1908 after 7 years operational.
15 October 1908 – Opening section Ipoh – Tronoh.
190924 March 1909 – Opening section (junction) Teluk Anson – New Wharves.
1 July 1909 – Opening section Segamat – Johore Bahru.
11 September 1909 – Opening section Tronoh – Tronoh mines.
The West Coast Line between Prai in Penang state and Johor Bahru completed and opened.
The Johore Railway was completed delivering most of the surface mail from central and western Peninsular Malaya due for Singapore.
19104 April 1910 – Opening section Gemas – Bahau.
4 April 1910 – Opening section Bahau – Kuala Pilah.
1 October 1910 – Opening section Bahau – Triang.
Construction of Kuala Lumpur Railway Station begin.
19111 August 1911 – Opening section Triang – Semantan
19121 March 1912 – Opening section Semantan – Kuala Krau
16 November 1912 – Opening section Kuala Krau – Kuala Teh
Railway line construction in Kedah between Bukit Mertajam and Alor Setar begin.
The Johore locomotives were taken over by the FMSR in 1912
19131 February 1913 – Opening section Connaught Bridge – Junction Kapar.
15 May 1913 – Opening section Kuala Teh – Tembeling.
1 June 1913 – Opening section Kapar – Jeram.
1 September 1913 – Opening section Jeram – Assam Jawa.
1 September 1913 – Opening section Port Swettenham Junction – Salak South Junction.
Beginning study in Perlis for railway construction to connect Perlis and Kedah with other Malay State.
The Singapore Government Railway was purchased by the FMSR.
191415 February 1914 – Opening section Assam Jawa – Kuala Selangor
1 May 1914 – Opening section Ampang Junction – Ampang
4 May 1914 – Opening section Tumpat Tanah – Merah
19 October 1914 – Opening section Bukit Mertajam Pinang Tunggal
Railway line construction from Alor Setar to Padang Besar begin.
19151 March 1915 – Opening section Pinang Tunggal – Gurun.
1 July 1915 – Opening section Tanah Merah Riverside.
1 September 1915 – Opening section Kuang Junction – Batu Arang.
4 October 1915 – Opening section Gurun – Alor Star.
Bukit Timah Railway Station was opened in 1915
191715 October 1917 – Opening section Alor Star – Bukit Ketri
15 October 1917 – Opening section Tembeling – Kuala Lipis
Kuala Lumpur Railway Station construction complete.
19181 February 1918- Opening section Batu Arang Batang Berjuntai
1 March 1918- Opening section Bukit Metri Padang Besar
The properties and estates previously under the Singapore Railway were sold to the Government of the Federated Malay States for $4,136,000 and the railway renamed the Federated Malay States Railway (F.M.S.R.)
1 Julai 1918 – F.M.S.R network begin it’s service with Siam rail network.
19201 September 1920 – Opening section Pasir Mas – Rantau Panjang
192116 March 1921 – Opening section Kuala Lipis – Padang Tungku
FMSR numbers 214 to 233, the FMSR Class L was introduced in 1921
01 November 1921 – Hat Yai-Sungai Kolok Line opened; bridge connecting with FMSR at Rantau Panjang
Rail construction to east coast from Mersing begin.


  • 17 September 1923 – Opening section Johore Bahru – Woodlands
  • 15 November 1923 – Opening section Padang Tungku – Chigar Perah
  • First train carrying goods travels across the Malaysia-Singapore Causeway on 17 September ; followed by the first passenger train on 1 October the same year.
192421 July 1924 – Opening section Tanah Merah – Krai
1 August 1924 – Opening section Kuala Kubu Road – Rasa (deviation)
19257 September 1925 – Opening section Salak South Junction – Sungei Besi (2nd track)
192717 October 1927 – Opening section Krai – Manek Urai
5 December 1927 – Opening section Chigar Perah – Merapoh
1928A series of 5 0-6-2T locomotives Class T built by Bagnall for dock shunting.
193014 July 1930 – Opening section Merapoh – Gua Musang
 14 July 1930 – Opening section Manek Urai – Kuala Gris
1931 5 September 1931 – Opening section Gua Musang – Kuala Gris
  East Coast Line between Gemas and Bahau ; Mentakap ; Kuala Lipis ; Gua Musang ; Tumpat and Sungai Golok completed with the opening of the last stretch between Gua Musang and Kuala Gris in Kelantan.
19323 May 1932 – Opening section Bukit Timah Singapore, Tanjong Pagar
  The Tanjong Pagar Station was officially opened by Sir Cecil Clementi.
19361936 – 1937 – The Tank Road to Bukit Timah line is dismantled.
1948Malayan Railway Administration were created under The Malayan Railway Ordinance 1948 to manage railways previously managed by the states under FMS Railway. Malayan Railway Administration was later renamed as Keretapi Tanah Melayu (KTM).

1951 – 2000

Evolution and Transformation

In 1992, Malayan Railways Limited underwent a significant transformation and was restructured as a government-owned company, KTM Berhad. This move aimed to enhance operational efficiency, improve service quality, and position the company for future growth. With this transformation, KTM Berhad took on a more customer-centric approach, emphasizing the importance of providing reliable and convenient transportation options to the Malaysian public.

2001Government decided to put privatization of KTMB on-hold as it was not financially viable. KTMB suffered considerable amount of money losses for commuter and long distance passenger services. Only the freight train service was profitable. Renong group pull back its interest to take over KTMB.
2002KTMB was put back under internal management.
2003Class 26 Blue Tiger, locomotives are KTMB’s latest and most modern traction.
2005Class 29 Powerful diesel locomotives being supplied to KTMB from China.


  • 1 July 2005 – KTM Komuter network began accepting Touch ‘n Go electronic farecards.

Ongoing Innovations and Future Plans

KTM Berhad is committed to continuous improvement and innovation. The company has implemented various initiatives to enhance customer experience and ensure operational excellence. These include introducing online ticketing systems, upgrading infrastructure, and adopting advanced technologies to improve efficiency and safety.

Looking ahead, KTM Berhad has ambitious plans for expansion and modernization. The company aims to introduce new train services, upgrade existing fleets, and enhance connectivity across various regions of Malaysia. These efforts will further strengthen KTM Berhad’s position as a leading rail operator and support the country’s transportation needs.

Conclusion (Word Count: 120) KTM Berhad has a rich and storied history that spans more than a century. From its humble beginnings as a tin ore transporter to its evolution into a comprehensive rail operator, KTM Berhad has continually adapted to meet the changing needs of the nation. With its diverse range of services and ongoing commitment to innovation, KTM Berhad is poised to shape the future of Malaysia’s railway transportation, ensuring that it remains an integral part of the nation’s growth and development for years to come.