Japan’s Prime Minister has claimed that the Pacific nation is still planning for the Olympics to go ahead as planned.
Despite growing fears surrounding the global outbreak of the coronavirus that has seen the cancellation or postponement of just about every major sporting event on the planet, Shinzo Abe is confident that the Tokyo 2020 showpiece will take place as scheduled.
Due to begin in July, Abe and his government have been working overtime to contain the outbreak of the virus in their country to ensure they are ready to host the sporting carnival.
However, after US President Donald Trump suggested that a one-year postponement should be considered, Abe moved swiftly to assuage the growing fears among stakeholders and sponsors.
“We will overcome the spread of the infection and host the Olympics without problem, as planned,” Abe told a news conference in Tokyo.
He then confirmed that he had spoken with Trump about his comments and had managed to convince him of Japan’s desire to go ahead with their plans for July and August.
With the games said to have cost the country a staggering $12 billion while attracting $3 billion in global sponsorships, it is no surprise that they are doing everything in the power to ensure the games take place this year.
However, with the number of confirmed cases rapidly climbing worldwide, authorities may have no choice but to postpone.
With thousands of athletes and their staff due to descend on the Japanese capital for the games, and with the majority of them mingling in close quarters within the Olympic village, you can’t help but fear the outbreak will only be exacerbated.
However, July is still a good while away and we certainly hope that the outbreak will have been contained by then.
We are all for the Olympics going ahead as planned as long as the safety and welfare of fans and athletes alike are given precedence.