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  • Tokyo 2020 Simplification Takes Shape


    (ATR) The reduction of stakeholder personnel attending the Tokyo Olympic Games, streamlining transportation services, adjusting spectator activities at venues, and hosting various pre-Games meetings online are among more than 50 measures agreed upon by Tokyo 2020 officials and IOC leaders.

    Tokyo 2020 CEO Toshiro Muto and president Yoshiro Mori at press conference, with IOC CoComm chair John Coates in the monitor. (IOC)
    Simplification of the Games led the agenda at a two-day virtual coordination commission meeting between IOC and Tokyo 2020 leaders, which concluded on Friday.

    According to the IOC, the measures are designed to deliver a safe and successful Games, while aiming to reduce costs and increase efficiencies. They are split into four main categories: stakeholders, infrastructure, promotion and other areas of interest. Further measures will be explored in an ongoing process.

    Tokyo 2020 coordination committee chair John Coates presided over the meeting and addressed media afterwards from his home in Australia, while IOC Olympic Games executive director Christophe Dubi joined from Lausanne. Tokyo 2020 president Yoshiro Mori and chief executive Toshiro Muto participated in the joint press conference together in the Japanese capital.

    “I’m sure what we are going to deliver is a new Games fit for a post-Corona world,” Coates said in opening remarks. “As we go thorough these simplifications, these efficiencies, we’re going to leave an important legacy that we’re already calling the ‘Tokyo Model’ that will benefit future Olympic organizing committees for years to come.”

    Mori answers reporter's question during press conference. (IOC)
    Mori spoke of the significance of developing the more specific measures and new direction being taken, while citing close cooperation with the IOC and IPC, in addition to other key stakeholders.

    “This process will benefit future society – becoming a role model for future global events as people adapt to living in the new normal,” Mori said. “We will make all efforts to ensure that in the future the Tokyo 2020 Games will be a legacy.

    “We will continue to work hard on simplifications towards next year and ask for the continued cooperation of all those involved in the Games.”

    Mori also addressed a question about potential countermeasures placed on the opening and closing ceremonies, noting it is still to be determined.

    “We will consider how we can simplify the ceremonies, but we should not do it simply – I hope they will be moving and touching ceremonies,” Mori said.

    John Coates attended the event from his home in Australia. (IOC)
    Coates once again insisted that Tokyo organizers, unequivocally, will deliver the Games next summer.

    “It would have been very easy for you to say this isn’t possible, but I think we all share the view this has to be possible, this has to happen, because we cannot deny a generation of athletes participating in an Olympic Games,” said the Australian sports leader.

    IOC president Thomas Bach delivered encouraging remarks to the Japanese partners at the onset of the two-day gathering, suggesting that “hundreds of millions” of doses of COVID-19 vaccines would be available before the postponed Olympics begin on July 23.

    “In the first couple months of next year we will have different vaccines.” Bach said. “They will be available in very considerable doses.”

    Coates added that it is conceivable that if vaccination agreements are reached, athletes might have to accept vaccines.

    Bach also said that the Tokyo Games are the “best prepared” in history, but more work needs to be done.

    Christophe Dubi attended virtually from Lausanne. (IOC)
    Dubi poignantly expressed “unwavering support” on behalf of the IOC and Olympic family for Tokyo 2020’s persistence to stage safe Games in July and August of 2021.

    “The president was extremely clear in his address yesterday regarding the fact that we have be flexible, we have to be creative and to your point Toshiro, the efforts will continue,” Dubi said.

    “We have a result at this point in time regarding the savings and we have many measures and they look small, but when you take them all together it will represent a large result in terms of both simplification and hopefully as well, since you are making the calculations, produce some significant savings.

    “Very important to mention that this an ongoing event in the course of the coordination, not later than an hour ago we were discussing some of the elements – we have to look at a venue by venue basis, sport by sport basis, very detailed, no stone unturned, with some of the new milestones being in December for some of the measures.

    “The effort that has been done so far is enormous, but it continues and it continues with the support of the IOC, the International Federations, the National Olympic Committees, our partners that all have been called on to make the efforts and they are doing it.”

    Tokyo 2020 discussions will continue as the IOC Executive Board convenes next on October 7.

    Homepage photo: ATR

    Written by Brian Pinelli with reporting from Hironori Hashimoto in Tokyo

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