In March, Japan’s Prime Minister, Shinzo Abe, announced that the Tokyo Olympics would push through as planned. A week after that announcement, it was announced that they would be postponed after all. Now, it has been confirmed that preparations are finally moving forward once again. This marks a big step for the organisers of the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020, which are now set to open on July 23, 2021 – exactly a year from now.
The Organising Committee’s CEO, Toshiro Muto, and its President, Yoshiro Mori, have confirmed that the 43 competition venues, the International Broadcast Centre, the Main Press Centre, and the Olympic Village, would all be put to use for the 2021 Olympics. The competition schedule is also set to stay as planned with mere changes in timing.
Thomas Bach, the President of the International Olympic Committee, shared how happy he is about the confirmations. “This means that the athletes will have this once-in-a-lifetime experience,” he says. “Athletes from all around the world will live together under one roof in the Olympic Village, sharing meals together, celebrating together, discussing together and forming these unique Olympic communities.”
Things won’t just be smooth sailing from here, though. There is still a huge task ahead with just a year left to prepare amidst the current global crisis that is Covid-19. “We are working to optimise the operations and services without touching on sports and athletes,” assures Bach. “In this way, we can – together with the Organising Committee – turn these postponed Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 into an unprecedented celebration of unity and solidarity of humankind, making them a symbol of resilience and hope.”
In line with this, the New Launch Task Force has been created in order to organise systems that will deal with these challenges. Since the postponement of the Olympic Games was announced, the IOC has been working hard to lessen its impact. Along with their delivery partners from the Coordination Commission and the Organising Committee, the IOC continues to review any opportunities that can help streamline the Olympics’ service levels and scope, and improve on it.
Of course, their main priority is still to ensure the health and safety of all of the participants of the Olympic Games. Today (July 23), the Olympic brand campaign #StrongerTogether was launched, along with digitally-led activities focusing on the Olympic flame, and the strength and the resilience of the athletes.