STATEMENT FROM JOHN COATES ON RETIREMENT BY JAPANESE PRIME MINISTER SHINZO ABE

I have enormous respect for Prime Minister Abe and certainly wish him well. This is disappointing news from a professional and personal perspective. My interactions with him have always been very positive and constructive.

He has been a great friend of the Olympic movement and a champion of Japan’s preparations for the Tokyo Olympic Games, now due to be held next year.

With his government’s firm commitment, the Tokyo Olympic Games Organising Committee’s readiness to host the Olympic Games was quite extraordinary. Japan was ready, but due to COVID we now look to next year.

I certainly hope he can successfully overcome the current challenges he faces away from political office and I am sure a smooth transition will follow to ensure Japan’s momentum can continue.

I very much look forward to PM Abe joining us for the Opening Ceremony on 23 July 2021 in the new National Stadium that he was instrumental in delivering.

His support has been enormous.

John Coates

Chair of the IOC Tokyo 2020 Coordination Commission

Your best source of news about the Olympics is www.aroundtherings.com, for subscribers only