Tokyo Considering Spectator-Less Olympics But With Big Economic Impact

As we reported earlier this week, International Olympic Committee (IOC) President Thomas Bach released a video statement providing an update on the status of the 2021 Olympic Games exactly six months out from the Opening Ceremonies.

“Everybody is really determined to make this Olympic Games, in six months from now, the light at the end of the tunnel in which, at this moment, we are all still in,” he said.

Although Bach did touch on the countermeasures the IOC is working to put in place in light of the COVID-19 pandemic, specifics were not laid out yet. A big pandemic-related constraint is a consideration of having a spectator-less Olympic Games, meaning there would be no fans physically present in Tokyo during competition.

Last week Tokyo 2020 organizing committee President Yoshiro Mori said a decision should be made in February or March whether the COVID-19 risks have fallen enough to let spectators attend. 

Then today, he said, “We have been doing all kinds of simulations. Basically, I don’t think (the games without fans) is something that would happen or something that I would like to do, but it won’t be a simulation unless we think about it.” (Kyodo News)

The Japanese government is reportedly considering three options for a springtime decision — not imposing a limit on spectators, placing a ceiling of 50 percent of the venues’ capacity or holding events behind closed doors, according to the officials. (Kyodo News)

Aside from the unprecedented fact stadiums could potentially be silent with competitors having to imagine spectators cheering them on, the idea of not having spectators would deal a mega blow to the Japanese economy.

Katsuhiro Miyamoto, an honorary professor at Kansai University, produced a report estimating the economic loss which would incur if the Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics were to be held without spectators.

His estimates, which were released late last week, said holding the Tokyo Games behind closed doors would cause national economic damage of up to ¥2.4 trillion (nearly $23 billion USD).

This is due to the potential loss of spectator spending related directly to the Games, as well as stimulus effects on household consumption expenditures and corporate marketing activities. He estimates the economic gains from promotional sporting and cultural events after the Games would also be greatly reduced. (Japan Times)

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4 months ago

Florida can do it at 100%

Olympunks & Gamester Bullies
4 months ago

Enough with the “light at the end of the tunnel” savior syndrome nonsense…people are not that narrow minded nor do they have tunnel vision.

80% of the local people do not share the Olympic vision…get over it…and be honest and speak openly about who’s few voices that are the only ones that really drive this narrow desire forward.

If any, 2032 is the best solution…although far from perfect.

Reply to  Olympunks & Gamester Bullies
4 months ago

12 years to flatten the curve!

Reply to  swimgeek
4 months ago

Only if we triple mask!

Reply to  Coachy
4 months ago

24 vaccine jabs 6 months apart!

4 months ago

What is the economic impact if they cancel it? Just curious.

Reply to  CoachD
4 months ago

Around 11 billion?

Reply to  Monteswim
4 months ago

That’s a lot of moula

About Retta Race

Retta Race

Swim analyst, businesswoman.

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