Wed, 21 Oct 2020

Yoshiro Mori (C), president of Tokyo 2020 Organizing Committee, speaks during a joint press conference between the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and Tokyo 2020 on Sept. 25, 2020. (Rodrigo Reyes Marin/POOL via Xinhua)

The number of officials attending next year's Olympics and Paralympic Games will be cut by 10 to 15 per cent as a cost-cutting measure.

TOKYO, Sept. 25 (Xinhua) -- The International Olympic Committee (IOC) and Tokyo 2020 Organisers agreed on Friday to a round of simplification measures to reduce the cost of the postponed 2020 Olympic Games.

The most familiar and important event to be affected will be the traditional ceremonies in the athletes' village to mark the arrival of each NOC team. Regarded as one of the most memorable occasions for the participating athletes, the ceremonies will be canceled, although the Chef de Mission will have an opportunity to be greeted by the Village Mayor.

Tokyo 2020 delivery officer Hidemasa Nakamura told reporters at a news conference that the ceremony was canceled as a countermeasure against COVID-19.

"We know it is very important, but we think it will not affect the competitions of the Olympic Games," he said.

The opening and closing ceremonies will not be downscaled as previously revealed but the measures did mention that "simplifying the overall contents" of the opening and closing ceremonies are under "on-going consideration."

Other measures include the reduction of stakeholder personnel attending the Games by 10 to 15 percent, streamlining transport services, adjusting spectator activities at competition venues and hosting a number of pre-Games meetings online.

IOC Coordination Commission Chair John Coates described the measures as a "milestone" and an "important step" towards delivering a safe and successful Games in 2021.

"The 'Tokyo Model' will not only deliver a Games fit for a post-corona world, but it will also become a blueprint that will benefit future Organising Committees for many years to come," the Australian said.

However, these represent just one quarter of over 200 simplification measures to be discussed, and more challenges are lying ahead for both IOC and Olympics organizers.

Tokyo 2020 President Mori Yoshiro added: "We will continue to work hard on simplifications towards next year and ask for the continued cooperation of all those involved in the Games." ■

Sign up for Trinidad News

a daily newsletter full of things to discuss over drinks.and the great thing is that it's on the house!