July 19, 2021: According to a local media survey, Tokyo 2020 sponsor Toyota will not run Olympic-related TV commercials for the Olympics which are already under the cloud of low public support, with two-thirds of Japanese population skeptical that organizers could keep the Games safe during the Covid 19 pandemic.
Toyota said Monday that Toyota Motor Corporation’s chief executive officer, Akio Toyoda, and other officials will also not attend the opening ceremony.
A spokesman said: “It is true that Toyota will not be attending the opening ceremony, and the decision took into account a number of factors, including the absence of any spectators.” “We will not run any sports-related advertisements in Japan,” he added.
About 60 of the Japanese corporations that have paid more than 3 billion in sponsorship rights to end the 2020 Olympics delay now face the problem of failing to gain any public support and whether or not to tie their brands to an event with such low public support.
Just four days before the opening ceremony in Tokyo, a survey by Asahi newspaper found that 68 percent of respondents expressed doubts about the ability of Olympic organizers to control corona virus infections, with 55 percent saying they were opposed to the Games being held in these conditions
Three-quarters of the 1,444 people surveyed said they agreed with the decision to ban spectators. In Tokyo, as cases of COVID-19, now in its fourth state of emergency, escalate, public concern has grown that the Japanese capital will host an event with thousands of overseas athletes, officials and journalists. Many fear the event can speed up the rate of infection and introduce more deadly and infectious variants from other destinations.
Thomas Bach, president of the International Olympic Committee, has said he hopes the Japanese people will be excited about the Games once the competition starts and when Japanese athletes start winning medals.
The Tokyo Olympics will run from July 23 to August 8. Government spokesman, Chief Cabinet Secretary Katsunobu Katu said in a regular briefing, “We work closely with organizers such as the Tokyo Metropolitan Government, Tokyo 2020 and the IOC to ensure a safe and secure environment for the Games and will continue to do. “
Sports officials on Sunday reported the first COVID-19 among athletes competing in a village in Tokyo, where 11,000 athletes are expected to stay during the Games. Since July 2, Tokyo 2020 organizers have reported 58 positive cases among athletes, officials and journalists. Olympic officials and individual event organizers have emergency plans to deal with the infection among athletes.
A Tokyo 2020 spokesman said the village was a safe place to live, adding that the infection rate among athletes and other sports-related people going to Japan was about 0.1 percent. On Sunday, two crew members with six British track and field athletes were forced to stay in isolation after a positive experience while traveling to Japan. “Before many athletes leave for Tokyo, parties or events can be held to celebrate or congratulate them,” said Koji Wada, a professor at the International University of Health and Welfare in Tokyo and a government adviser on the corona virus.
The latest increase in cases in Tokyo comes after four initial waves, the deadliest of which was in January. The number of new cases of Covid 19 in Tokyo reached 1,410 on Saturday, the highest number since the beginning of the year, with more than 1,000 new infections in five days.
Most of these new cases are in young people, as Japan has managed to vaccinate most of its vulnerable elderly population with at least one shot, although so far only 32 percent of the population has been vaccinated with the first shot.
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