Tokyo 2020 saves $6b but seeks further cuts

BUENOS AIRES • Several measures have cut the costs of staging the 2020 Tokyo Olympics by US$4.3 billion (S$5.9 billion) but the organisers are determined to save more money in the next two years, the event's chief executive officer Toshiro Muto said on Monday.

He told the International Olympic Committee (IOC) efforts were being made to reduce the budget further through a series of initiatives linked with the IOC's Agenda 2020 and New Norm reform projects.

The two IOC projects are aimed at dropping the costs of the Olympics to make the Games an attractive prospect for potential host cities in the future.

"We have been able to save another US$2.1 billion," Muto said, presenting a progress report to the IOC session. "It has been US$4.3 billion in savings in total.

"(The IOC's) Agenda 2020 and New Norm (cost-reducing measures) will allow Tokyo 2020 to suppress future budget increases. We have reached the phase of detailed preparations."

The Games budget spiralled dangerously out of control a few years after the Japanese capital was awarded the event in 2013. The escalating costs meant other cities hoping to stage future editions were discouraged from doing so, leading to Rome, Hamburg and Budapest pulling out of the race to host the 2024 Olympics, which Paris will host.

The 2020 Games' overall budget, after several revisions, now stands at US$12.6 billion. Of that amount, US$5.6 billion is the organising committee's budget for staging the Games, with the IOC contributing some US$1.7 billion in cash and services. Muto revealed that savings, which the IOC welcomed, were being made by holding shorter test events, cutting lease periods and construction costs.

REUTERS

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 10, 2018, with the headline 'Tokyo 2020 saves $6b but seeks further cuts'. Print Edition | Subscribe