In a survey conducted by the Japanese news agency Kyodo and the Tokyo Broadcasting System (TBS), more than 80% of people in Japan says the Tokyo Olympics should be canceled or postponed, or say they believe the Olympics will not take place

/ 12 January 2021

The data gathered by the agency are bad news for Tokyo organizers and the International Olympic Committee as they continue to say that the kickoff of the postponed Olympics will be on July 23.

Tokyo is still fighting against the surge of COVID-19 cases that pushed the national government last week to call a state of emergency. Despite declaring the emergency, Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga positively said he was confident the Tokyo Olympics would be held.

Japan has attributed about 3,800 deaths to COVID-19 in a country of 126 million.

Japan is one of the nations that has controlled the virus relatively well but the rise has heightened skepticism about the need for the Olympics and the danger of potentially bringing over 15,000 Olympic and Paralympic athletes into the country.

The country is also expecting that the Olympics could also attract tens of thousands of coaches, judges, officials, VIPs, sponsors, media, and broadcasters.

Moreover, the organizers are still having discussions if fans from abroad will be allowed, or if local fans will attend events.

In the telephone survey conducted by TBS, they asked respondents if the Olympics can be held. A total of 1,261 respondents answered the poll and 81% replied “no” with only 13% answering “yes.” The “no” responses increased 18 percentage points from a similar survey conducted in December.

Meanwhile, in Kyodo’s poll, 80.1% of respondents in a telephone survey said the Olympics should be canceled or rescheduled. The same question in December found 63% calling for cancellation or postponement.

Kyodo said the survey covered 715 randomly selected households with eligible voters. Neither poll listed a margin of error.

To date, Japan already allocated $15.4 billion to hold the Olympics, although several government audit reports show the number is about $25 billion. All but $6.7 billion in public money.

The Switzerland-based IOC earns 91% of its income from selling broadcast rights and sponsorships.

The American network NBC agreed in 2011 to a $4.38 billion contract with the IOC to broadcast four Olympics through Tokyo. In 2014 it agreed to pay an added $7.75 billion for six more games—Winter and Summer—through 2032.