March 30, 2020
The Tokyo Olympics Organizing Committee March 30 announced new dates for the Summer Games postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic sweeping the globe.
The opening ceremony will now take place on July 23, 2021, concluding two weeks later on Aug. 8. The Paralympics will now take place Aug. 24-Sept. 5, 2021.
“These new dates give the health authorities and all involved in the organization of the Games the maximum time to deal with the constantly changing landscape and the disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic,” the International Olympic Committee said in a statement.
“The new dates … also have the added benefit that any disruption that the postponement will cause to the international sports calendar can be kept to a minimum, in the interests of the athletes and the [International Federations].”
Rescheduling of the Games will reportedly cost upwards of $1 billion to accommodate moving dates, venues and operations.
“Since it [the 2020 Olympics] were scheduled for this summer, all the venues had given up hosting any other events during this time, so how do we approach that?” Tokyo Games CEO Toshiro Muto told the AP. “In addition, there will need to be guarantees when we book the new dates, and there is a possibility this will incur rent payments. So there will be costs incurred and we will need to consider them one by one. I think that will be the tougher process.”
Indeed, media reports suggests the rescheduled Games could add an additional $4 billion in costs — the majority paid by Japanese taxpayers.