The Tokyo Olympics have officially been postponed by a year. On Monday, it was announced that the 2020 Games will now take place next summer with the Opening Ceremony set for July 23, 2021, according to ESPN.com. The Olympics were originally set to begin on July 24 and run through August 9.
Last week, it was announced by the IOC and Japanese organizers that the Olympics would be delayed during the coronavirus outbreak.
“The schedule for the Games is key to preparing for the Games,” Tokyo organizing committee president Yoshiro Mori said. “This will only accelerate our progress.”
The rescheduling of the games could cost Japan billions of dollars.
From the report:
Both Mori and CEO Toshiro Muto have said the cost of rescheduling will be “massive” — local reports estimate billions of dollars — with most of the expenses borne by Japanese taxpayers. Muto promised transparency in calculating the costs, and testing times deciding how they are divided up. “Since [the 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?” Muto asked. “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.”
The coronavirus outbreak has led to the cancellation or postponing of many large events including the NCAA Tournament, Coachella, SXSW, the Winter X Games, Stagecoach, Ultra Music Festival in Miami, and more. The NBA, NHL, and MLS have temporarily suspended their seasons.
The coronavirus mainly comes from animals and a majority of those who were infected early either worked at or frequently visited the Huanan seafood wholesale market in Wuhan, according to The Guardian. The virus is similar to Severe acute respiratory syndrome (Sars) and Middle Eastern respiratory syndrome (Mers).
The Wuhan coronavirus is transmitted from person to person through “droplet transmission.” That means an infected person can pass the virus by sneezing or coughing on another person as well as by direct contact.
While a majority of the cases have been detected in China, it has now reached many countries around the world including the United States. It has also been confirmed in Italy, Australia, Canada, France, Germany, and many other eastern countries.