The debate on whether the Tokyo Olympics should commence on time or not has started to take a toll on Japanese officials. Will the historic event be postponed again due to the COVID-19? Well, this question needs to be answered.
The event – originally scheduled to take place in 2020 – was postponed until mid-2021 due to the pandemic. As that date draws nearer though, speculation is once again cast and doubt now lingers on the commencement of the Tokyo Olympics.
Recently, a poll was conducted in Japan regarding the Tokyo Olympics. 80% of the people voted against the start of the Games, due to the pandemic. If the Olympics are postponed again it will cost about 0.5% of the total GDP of Japan.
The debacle reached its peak when news started making rounds on the internet that the Japanese government officials are not in favor of organizing the Olympics this year. The rumors were quickly squashed by the government representatives, and Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga announced that all the measures are being taken to make the Olympics commence this summer, yet the rumors didn’t subside completely.
Economic advisor to Japanese premier and Chief Executive of the beverage company, Suntory Holdings; Takeshi Niinami proposed four suggestions to be met in order to gain the confidence of the public and different Olympic committees across the world; which will help in holding the Olympics as per scheduled on July 23.
The four suggestions which Takeshi Niinami proposed are:
- Controlling the current spread of the COVID-19 cases; as the country has been hit with a recent resurgence of cases, steeping the curve again.
- Japan has launched a coronavirus smartphone contact-tracing app that signals the nearby users about a COVID-19 positive person. He proposed to make it mandatory for people to wear the contract-tracking devices to prevent the spread of the virus.
- As per the schedule, the roll-out of the coronavirus vaccine should start by February.
- The country should hold sports events like professional baseball games to have an insight into how to hold a sports event on a grand scale.
Despite proposing all these suggestions, Niinami is still not certain as if the Olympics will be held this summer or not. As of now, Japan continues to deny the rumors of cancellation. Will the Tokyo Games come to be this summer or will it be pushed back once again? Only time will tell.