President Thomas Bach of the International Olympic Committee remains convinced that the Olympic Games will start in Tokyo next summer, although there is a second wave of coronavirus in parts of the world.
“ Perhaps there will be a fourth or fifth wave,” said the German driver. “But the means we get at our disposal to combat them are also getting better.”
In particular, Bach expects that fast and reliable testing methods will help the organisation further. “In addition, there is an increase in the likelihood of a vaccine being available in one way or another in the short term. That is why both we and the local authorities in Japan are confident in it. And don‘t forget that we are already able to organise complex sports competitions in a safe and responsible way all over the world.”
Sports with an audience is still the goal of the IOC at the Olympic Games in Japan, Bach underlined once again. “Of course, we are also talking about spectators from countries other than Japan. But we do not make any final decisions on this. It’s too early for that. Perhaps in December or early next year more will become clear about the possibilities and how we will sell the tickets. Hopefully, Japan is currently playing with audiences in more and more large leagues.”
Bach also referred to the fact that the local organisers of Tokyo want to reduce costs by around EUR 240 million. According to the IOC, these measures should be structural and contribute to a responsible future of the event. “In Paris, something similar must be done in 2024.”
This cut must come, among other things, from reducing the number of people involved by up to 15%. This reduction does not apply to the number of athletes participating. There will be cuts in matters such as transport costs, office space costs and advertising.
The Tokyo Games were postponed this year due to the global outbreak of the virus.