Postponement of Tokyo Games to cost IOC millions

MOSCOW: The postponement of the Tokyo Olympics to 2021 due to the global coronavirus pandemic will cost the International Olympic Committee (IOC) hundreds of millions of dollars, reported Sputnik news agency — based on IOC President Thomas Bach’s quotes in an interview with the German Welt Am Sonntag newspaper published on Sunday.

In late March, the IOC and the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games Organising Committee announced the new dates for the Summer Olympics and Paralympics. The Olympic Games will take place from July 23 to August 8, 2021, and the Paralympic Games from August 24 to September 5, 2021.

According to Bach, as quoted by the media outlet, at the moment it is difficult to accurately assess the costs associated with postponing the Olympics.

“For us, the IOC, it is already clear that we shall be faced with several hundred million dollars of additional costs,” the official said.

Bach added that the IOC could not be blamed for indecisiveness or lack of transparency.

“In critical situations like this, you can’t expect universal support. You can’t satisfy everyone. The support that really counted was the trust that the Olympic Movement placed in its leadership,” the newspaper quoted the IOC president as saying.

Bach went on to say that the committee’s number one priority remained the well-being of athletes and everyone else.

“For now the priority is to devote all our energies to leading the Olympic Movement and the Olympic Games through this crisis, and to ensuring that we emerge from it in a strong position to take on the role that sport and the Olympic Games will play in future in a changed society,” the official said.

The Olympic Games have been cancelled three times: the 1916 games in Berlin were not held because of World War I; and World War II resulted in the cancellation of the 1940 games in Tokyo and the 1944 Olympics in London. – Bernama