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  • Top Story Replay: IOC Calls for More Tokyo 2020 Cuts


    IOC CoComm chairman for Tokyo 2020 John Coates (L) and Tokyo 2020 president Yoshiro Mori (C) attend meeting of the Coordination Commission on Tuesday. (Getty Images)
    (ATR) Speaking on the opening day of the IOC coordination commission’s three-day check-up of Tokyo 2020’s preparations, chairman John Coates encouraged the organizing committee to trim the budget after a wave of cost savings.

    "We appreciate your continued efforts to reduce the operational budget and other budgets," Coates said in Tokyo, according to AFP. "We think there are still more savings to be obtained."

    Tokyo 2020 has already made around $2.2 billion of savings from the budget for venue construction and Games infrastructure. Coates suggested there was scope to make additional savings in temporary overlay for the Games, which has already been cut by some $800 million.

    “I think that together we can help you save some more money there. We want to be diligent,” Coates added.

    Tokyo 2020 released its latest budget calculations in December. Despite fears over the soaring Games bill, partly due to costs associated with fighting extreme weather, it remained at $12.6 billion. The Tokyo 2020 organising committee budget accounts for $5.6 billion of the total, which is “fully privately financed”.

    Last week at SportAccord, Tokyo 2020 organizers came under fire from a group of summer Olympic federations who raised a raft of concerns at the ASOIF general assembly.

    At SportAccord, transport and management of the heat were the two major talking points about Tokyo 2020. Other federations’ concerns focused on areas including test events, inflated accommodation costs and sport presentation.

    Speaking Tuesday in Tokyo, the IOC’s watchdog chief for Tokyo 2020 said Games organizers were now working through the laundry list of concerns.

    “We are confident you will be able to address them," he said.

    The IOC inspection team went on a venue tour this morning, with visits to the aquatics centre, canoe slalom course and the archery venue, which was completed only last month.

    Coates spoke at the opening plenary session. IOC Olympic Games executive director Christophe Dubi and Tokyo 2020 president Yoshiro Mori also delivered opening remarks to launch the IOC visit. The vice-governor of Tokyo and Japan’s Olympic minister contributed.

    The IOC inspection concludes Thursday with a joint press conference with Tokyo 2020.

    Around the Rings is told that IOC president Thomas Bach will travel to Tokyo to take part in the year-to-go celebrations on July 24. He will join Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe at the event.

    It’s not yet confirmed whether Bach’s visit is part of a wider tour of Asian countries.

    Reported by Mark Bisson

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