Asia Minute: Organizers: Tokyo Summer Olympics on Track

Sep 28, 2020

The prime minister of Japan says his country is determined to host the Olympic Games next summer. The latest planning includes dozens of changes, but many residents remain skeptical.

It may be hard to believe, but the Tokyo Summer Olympics are less than ten months away.

At least that’s the plan.

Japan’s new Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga said in a taped message to the United Nations General Assembly that he would “spare no effort in order to welcome you to games that are safe and secure.”

Organizers are working on procedures and protocols, including more than 50 items to “simplify” the games — from scaling back the size of those country delegations to streamlining the Olympic Torch relay. Agence France Presse reports the working plan is for athletes to be tested for COVID-19 before they leave their home countries and after they arrive in Japan.

While many other questions are still under consideration, skepticism persists in the host country.

A survey this summer by Kyodo News found less than a quarter of Japanese surveyed are in favor of holding the Tokyo Olympics next summer. 36% think the games should be postponed again, while about a third say they should just be cancelled. 

The organizers of the games say they’ll have more details about how to move forward in a plan they’ll present to the board of the International Olympic Committee next month.