Tokyo 2020 organisers seeking to cut costs of delayed Games

The ― Tokyo 2020 Olympics were postponed in a historic decision earlier this year because of the coronavirus pandemic, with a scaled-down version set to be held from July 23, 2021. — AFP pic
The ― Tokyo 2020 Olympics were postponed in a historic decision earlier this year because of the coronavirus pandemic, with a scaled-down version set to be held from July 23, 2021. — AFP pic

TOKYO, Sept 16 ― Tokyo 2020 Olympics organisers said yesterday they were looking at ways of saving money in staging the delayed Games by cutting spending on officials and facilities.

The 2020 Games were postponed in a historic decision earlier this year because of the coronavirus pandemic, with a scaled-down version set to be held from July 23, 2021.

The delay has thrown up a plethora of new costs, from re-booking venues and transport to retaining a huge organising committee staff for an extra year.

As part of cost-cutting efforts organisers will scrutinise the number of officials scheduled to be present at Tokyo 2020, CEO Toshiro Muto told a news conference yesterday.

Muto did not specify which officials, but the term can cover a broad range, from overseas delegates to engineers to management staff.

Welcoming ceremonies for athletes were also being reviewed, he added, and officials would also look at costs at venues, athletes' villages, training facilities and the international press centre.

Muto offered few details, but said Japanese officials aimed to reach an agreement on the cost-cutting proposals during next week's meeting with the International Olympic Committee.

Muto also said he agreed with International Olympic Committee vice-president John Coates over his remarks stressing that the postponed Games must be held next year despite the outbreak.

“Our thought is accorded... with the opinion of Chairman Coates” over their commitment to holding the Games, Muto said.

Coates, who is also chairman of the Tokyo coordination commission, told AFP earlier this month that the Games would go ahead in 2021 “with or without Covid”. ― AFP

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