This question has been asked repeatedly over the past months and weeks: why is Japan so keen (actually so desperate) to carry the Tokyo Olympics? Why is it being so insistent and pushy?
Well, the only answer is that Japan has already spent an astronomical sum of cash , totally on public finances, to organize for the Olympics. The outlay was already colossal in 2020; it mounted significantly after the postponement thanks to the pandemic. As per the official budget update put call at December 2020 by the Tokyo Organizing Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (TOCOG), a complete of roughly 1.64 trillion Japanese yen was expected to be spent for the preparation of the postponed Olympic and Paralympic Games. Venue-related expenses comprised the lion’s share of the expenditure, because the organizers built 19 new venues (10 of which were temporary) and renovated 18 others. Disregarding any expected economic ripple effects, Japan’s planned expenditure for the games has already exceeded its foreseen revenue manifolds.
According to estimates dating from January 2021, the japanese government and other entities involved in hosting the Tokyo 2020 Summer Olympic Games would lose approximately 640 billion Japanese yen if the event was further postponed. Just in case the Olympic Games are canceled altogether, the loss would amount to an estimated 4.5 trillion Japanese yen.
Now to a really relevant question: what's the public opinion in Japan on the hosting of the Olympic Games before and after the arrival of COVID-19?
Honestly, the people of Japan had high expectations regarding the Olympic Games, as are often testified by the share of persons looking forward to the Olympic Games at the end of December 2019. After the postponement and particularly thanks to a rise in COVID-19 cases during 2020, former high expectations became apprehensions because the share of individuals in Japan who believed that the Tokyo 2020 Olympics wouldn't be held became the bulk during the summer months of 2020. Opinion surveys dating from the primary months of 2021 showed that an increasing share of the japanese population were favoring another postponement or cancellation. Earlier this month, two surveys revealed that quite 80% of the japanese citizens surveyed believed the Games wouldn't continue -- or shouldn't.
The Japanese government is keen to carry the Olympics for the apparent prestige, and to celebrate Japan's virtues and strengths globally. It wants to reprise the glory of the 1964 Tokyo Olympic Games and lift national and global spirits that have plummeted during the pandemic. It also hopes to jolt a moribund economy. except for now, nobody is basically sure what the longer term holds. Will the Olympics happen? Or won’t they? It's a trillion yen question needless to say.
Tokyo 2020 President Yoshiro Mori said earlier in February that Japan would hold the Summer Olympics no matter things with the COVID-19 pandemic and was working closely with the International Olympic Committee to make them happen. “We will hold the Olympics, regardless of how the coronavirus (situation) looks,” Mori said, adding that the discussion should focus on how, not whether, the Olympics will happen. But not everybody around is as gung-ho. Sir Keith Mills, former CEO of London 2012 Olympics recently went on record to say, "I think they'll leave it to absolutely the last minute in case the situation improves dramatically, in case the vaccinations roll out faster than we all hoped. it's a tough call. Personally, sitting here looking at the pandemic around the world, it looks unlikely I have to say.”
So where will the revenues for the Olympics flow in? Since understanding figures in Japanese may be a touch confusing for many , allow us to broadly say that the Olympics in Tokyo are going to cost Japan about USD 25 billion. about USD 6.7 billion of this money is public money. The Worldwide Olympic Partners, signed centrally by the International Olympics Committee (IOC) are 14 in number: Airbnb, Alibaba, Atos, Bridgestone, Coca cola, Dow Chemicals, General Electric, Intel, Omega, Panasonic, Procter & Gamble, Samsung, Toyota and Visa. Of these, Bridgestone, Panasonic and Toyota are Japanese. Between them these sponsors will usher in about USD 1.3 billion but the lion’s share of sponsorship money will stick with the IOC.
Next in line are 15 ‘Golden Partners’ signed by TOCOG locally in Japan through ad-giant Dentsu. These include the likes of Aszhi, Canon, Fujitsu, NEC and Tokio Marine. Then there are 33 ‘Official Partners’ … including the likes of All Nippon Airways, Cisco Systems, Kikkoman, Nissin Foods, Toto and more. Next within the hierarchy are 19 ‘Official Sponsors and Suppliers’ that count Alphabet, Boston Consulting Group, Ernst & Young, et al. within the list.
Between them Japanese domestic sponsors were to initially contribute a record of USD 3.3 billion to the Olympics budget , but the postponement by a year pushed the contribution to past USD 3.5 billion. this is often a minimum of twice — perhaps 3 times — as large as any previous Olympics. It's tribute indeed to Japanese nationalism that not one among the 68 sponsors committed to the Tokyo Games has backed out, or whimpered on the escalation of costs and contributions. For Japanese business, the Tokyo Games are a national cause and transcend discussions of profit or benefit. Sponsors just like the airline ANA and Japan Airlines are among those struggling during the pandemic, but they're also steadfastly continuing to contribute. Such is that the unflinching commitment.Dr. Dhillon Randeep
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