Malaysia's Prime Minister Najib Razak and Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong announce the two countries will build a high-speed rail project on Feb. 19, 2013. About 150 companies have expressed interest in the project, Singapore said on Oct. 19, 2015. Reuters

As many as 150 companies have expressed interest in the $9.4 billion Singapore-Kuala Lumpur rail project, the latest development in the race to build Southeast Asia's first high-speed rail.

The companies come from Malaysia, Singapore, the Asia-Pacific, Europe, Middle East and North America, Singapore's Land Transportation Authority said on its website. The companies are joining the so-called Request for Information exercise, where the government gets feedback to help it finalize the project. Companies can submit their feedback until Nov. 18, the LTA said.

About 50 Korean companies and agencies formed a group that joined the exercise, Channel News Asia reported on Sunday.

The 330 kilometer project was proposed as early as 2006, but Malaysia shelved it in 2008 due to high projected costs.

Last month, Indonesia awarded its first high speed rail project to China, in a controversial process that Japan protested.