Tokyo Olympics 2020: Opening ceremony of postponed Games likely to take place in July 2021, say sources

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) and Japanese organisers are in the final stages of talks to set the opening date for the Tokyo Games in July next year, Japanese media said.

Reuters March 29, 2020 08:47:43 IST
Tokyo Olympics 2020: Opening ceremony of postponed Games likely to take place in July 2021, say sources

Tokyo: The International Olympic Committee (IOC) and Japanese organisers are in the final stages of talks to set the opening date for the Tokyo Games in July next year, Japanese media said.

Tokyo Olympics 2020 Opening ceremony of postponed Games likely to take place in July 2021 say sources

Representational image. AP

The Tokyo event, postponed last week due to the coronavirus pandemic, will most likely have its opening ceremony in 2021 on 23 July and closing ceremony on 8 August, each a day earlier on the calendar than the original 2020 plan, said public broadcaster NHK on Sunday, citing unnamed sources.

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe announced a delay of about one year on Tuesday after a call with IOC president Thomas Bach. It is the first postponement in the 124-year history of the modern Olympics, although several - including the 1940 Tokyo Games - were cancelled due to war.

The delay is a huge blow to Japan, who have invested $12 billion in the run-up, although financial markets initially cheered by the decision, as some investors had anticipated cancellation.

Economy Minister Yasutoshi Nishimura said on Sunday the government, now compiling economic-stimulus measures that Abe said will be the biggest ever, will take into account that the Olympic delay will push back several trillions of yen (tens of billions of dollars) of demand to next year.

“If demand is being pushed back until next year, that means the same amount of demand will evaporate this year. We’ll take this into account” in compiling the stimulus package, Nishimura told a television programme.

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