December 6, 2013
CEO of Tokyo: ‘We will deliver superb Games’
By Ariel Giuliani
With the final decision to be ta-ken tomorrow, Tokyo ran the last metres of this tight competition alongside with other candidates, Madrid and Istanbul with the aim of taking the honour of hosting 2020 Olympic Games. However, Masato Mizuno, CEO of Tokyo 2020, is confident that a solid economy and the experience of having host successfully the Summer Olympic Games in 1964 make them favourites.
Why should Tokyo be chosen?
Tokyo has a global vision that will benefit sport and the Olympic Movement. We are the safe pair of hands that can be trusted to deliver superb Games in these uncertain times for sport. Over the last two years, Japan has witnessed the significant role athletes and sport can play in society. Now, we are determined to share that inspiration and promote the Olympic values. Tokyo 2020 will be Games of celebration, delivery and innovation to benefit athletes and sport worldwide.
Tokyo already knows what it takes to organize a Game and shortly after its worst moment in History. What past experiences can serve 60 years later?
After all these years, the successful Games of 1964 are still remembered all over the world. They were well-organized and inspiring. Today, we believe Tokyo can offer the Olympic Movement a powerful global platform at a time when Olympism has never been more important.
What level of progress has Tokyo Olympic Infrastructure at the moment?
We are a reliable and safe pair of hands that the Olympic Movement can count on. As one of the world’s safest, welcoming cities, we offer political stability and strong social unity: a society with Olympic Values. Also, world-class infrastructure and services, transport, accommodation, and safety-security. Tokyo offers superb Games venues and plans, and major hosting experience apart from a financial strength (4.5 billion dollars Games Fund already in the bank).
Athletes and the entire Olympic Family will benefit from an ultra-compact plan: 27 out of 32 venues in Tokyo (85 percent) will be within an eight-kilometre radius of the Olympic Village. A total of 36 competition venues are proposed. Fifteen already exist, and 21 will be built. Eleven of those will be permanent; 10 will be temporary.
Can a strong Japanese economy influence the final decision?
Tokyo 2020’s Bid effort is focused on demonstrating how we will provide the best possible stage for athletes, and the IOC members will consider a wide range of important factors in their individual decisions. We are determined to host Games in 2020 that will welcome the world in the spirit of the Olympic Movement and showcase Olympic Values of Excellence, Friendship and Respect.
Do you think that what the Governor of Tokyo said “The only thing that Arabs have in common is Allah and they are fighting each other” will influence the vote for breaking the law the prevents opponents talk about the other Candidates Cities?
The Governor apologized for that comment, and the IOC officially closed the matter. We are focused on ensuring that the members are aware of Tokyo’s strengths and our ability to host a Games of celebration, delivery and innovation to benefit athletes and sport worldwide.
Martial arts are a key part in oriental culture. Which is the Tokyo position on these disciplines in general and specifically the Japanese?
The Olympic Games are a celebration of sport. Tokyo has built an ongoing dialogue with the 28 International Federations and eight Paralympic International Federations, and these relationships have directly influenced the content of our bid. Well before the Candidature File Submission, in fact, all participating International Federations accepted Tokyo 2020’s sports venue plans. We will welcome every sport into the heart of our city, offering great exposure and the best Games experience possible for athletes, Olympic and Paralympic Families, and spectators alike.
Which is the Olympic legacy you think you will leave?
We believe the Games in Tokyo will provide both tangible and intangible legacies. We’re planning 11 new permanent venues, including a stunning national stadium and great venues for Olympic sports. We will introduce the Sport for Tomorrow programme, which will expand on Japan’s existing global sport development programmes.
Regarding the intangibles, Tokyo 2020 will deliver superb Games which will be a safe pair of hands for the Olympic Movement. Tokyo 2020 Games promote the Olympic Values for new generations, helping to enhance Olympism in this challenging and fast-changing era for sport.