Japan’s Olympics Dilemma: Political and Economic Gains or Public Health Safety?


Tokyo remains committed to hosting the Olympics, despite an efflux in COVID-19 cases. With the games less than a month away some experts question whether to cancel the event.

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) and Japanese government officials are confident that “with meticulous and comprehensive prevention and control measures in place” that the Tokyo Olympics games can be held in a manner that will ensure security and safety.

They build their case upon the success of recent sports championships such as the Augusta Masters golf tournament and the National Football league. Opposers contend that the sheer scale of the Olympic games makes it a mega event that cannot be compared to regular sporting events.

To strike a balance between the two parties health experts suggest the event can be made significantly safer by imposing that all participants get vaccinated. Even with this protocol, there is still a chance of an outbreak, though the effects of a spread would be minimum. However, the IOC is not willing to implement such a protocol.


Cost of canceling the Tokyo Olympics

The games stand to raise economic activities within Japan by triggering infrastructure investments leading up to the games and boost tourism at the time of the game giving Japan a much-needed boost.

 Canceling the games could deal a huge blow to Japan’s economy.

The current situation presents a moral contradiction to Japan, is it ethical to hold the games for political and economic gains at the cost of public health and safety?

Sources: CNBC, ABC News (Australia).