International Olympic Committee (IOC) President Thomas Bach said on Thursday that the IOC is willing to bear up costs of upto $800 million in the organisation of the postponed Tokyo Olympics. The 2020 Olympics was postponed to 2021 this March due to the coronavirus pandemic that has killed an estimated 3 lakh people worldwide and infected over 4 million.
"We anticipate we will have to bear costs of up to $800 million for our part and responsibilities in the organization of the postponed Games Tokyo 2020," Bach said in a teleconference after the IOC's Executive Board meeting.
Bach said that "$650 million would go towards the organization of the Games next year and $150 million to support international federations and National Olympic Committees (NOC)."
According to the latest budget, the Games were due to cost $12.6 billion, shared between the organising committee, the government of Japan and Tokyo city.
This is the first time that the IOC is publicly stating the extent of additional costs that it has to bear due to the unprecedented postponement of the Games.
Bach also denied any speculation on a potential second postponement of the Games or shifting it to a different venue if a vaccination is not found for coronavirus by the time the Games start. The Tokyo Olympics is scheduled to start on July 23 and end on August 8, 2021.
"We are now working with full engagement for the success of Tokyo 2020 in 2021 and to have these Games in a safe environment for all participants," he said.
"We are one year and two months away from the opening of these postponed Olympic Games. We should not fuel any speculation on any future development."
Bach had warned last month that the postponement would cost the IOC "several hundred million dollars", adding that while the body would honour its financial obligations to Tokyo, it would probably have to make cuts.
(With inputs from Agencies)