Simon Denyer Discusses the Tokyo Olympics Economic Tragedy

Hosting the Olympics has become quite controversial over the last two decades as nearly all the events during this time have gone over budget. Therefore the host cities and country have had to dig deeper into their pockets to make the event a success. Simon Denyer, veteran journalist, and former bureau chief at the Washington Post, pointed out that the recently concluded Tokyo Olympics were an economic tragedy for the city and the country of Japan. He pointed out that that the fallout from the event will likely change how host cities are selected in the future.

A disaster waiting to happen

Simon Denyer, who has been a journalist across the world and has headed the publication’s offices in China, India, London, and Nairobi, said that the economic tragedy witnessed during the Tokyo Olympics was a disaster that had been waiting to happen for years. This is because, starting in 1960 at the Rome Olympics, most of the events that have followed have gone over budget. However, this former Washington Post journalist said that this problem was not as visible as past ads hosting the Olympics came with numerous benefits to the host city or nation. These benefits like global exposure and record-breaking tourism, which greatly benefit local economies, cannot be easily quantified.

The Tokyo sore thumb

Unfortunately for Tokyo, it found itself hosting an Olympic event soon after the pandemic hit. Simon Denyer said this meant that most of the benefits usually come with hosting the Olympics would not be available to it. Firstly tourism into the country had to be halted for weeks leading to the event to limit the spread of Covid-19 and keep populations safe. This dealt a huge blow to businesses that had spent lots of money preparing for the Olympics. Simon Denyer said that additionally, it meant that Tokyo city and Japan were not able to recoup maximum value from the investment they had put into the event.

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