Osaka Mayor Ichiro Matsui has called on authorities to postpone the Tokyo Olympic Games for another three years until 2024 in order to ensure both the Olympics and the 2025 World Expo are a success.
As reported by the Sankei Shimbun, Matsui said this week it will be difficult to finish administering vaccinations across Japan by the summer, stating, “To ensure the Olympics are a joy and celebration for all after the coronavirus pandemic, we should negotiate with the IOC (International Olympic Committee) to hold the event in 2024.
“Holding the Olympics in 2024 and the [Osaka/Kansai] Expo in 2025 would be a good opportunity for growth and economic revitalization after the pandemic.
“For Japan to lead a post-corona world, we need to make sure the Expo and its theme of ‘Designing Future Society for Our Lives’ is a complete success.”
Osaka and Wakayama are both aiming to open respective IR facilities in 2026.
Tokyo is yet to make a clear statement around any plans of its own to develop an IR but Japan’s capital city is still looking to host the Olympics this year – 12 months after the original schedule. Whether the Games go ahead could have a dramatic impact on Japan’s entire IR initiative.