Olympics 2021: several Japanese sponsors will not participate in the opening ceremony

With less than 48 hours before the start of the Tokyo Olympics, several Japanese companies, sponsors of the event, have decided not to go to the Olympic stadium on Friday, July 23, to attend the opening ceremony.

The Japanese public’s disaffection with the Tokyo Olympics seems to be increasingly visible. While the opinion polls and testimonies of Tokyoites in the capital are increasingly numerous to protest against the event – arguing in particular of a Covid-19 epidemic far from being controlled in the archipelago – several big Japanese companies have decided to follow suit. And not just any: companies … sponsors of the Olympics.

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An absence justified “by the respect of the policy of absence of spectators in the grounds of the Games”

While preparations are underway within two days of the opening ceremony (Friday, July 23 at 1 p.m. French time), some large Japanese companies have in fact decided not to send officials to attend the event at Tokyo Olympic Stadium. A choice that they justify by respecting the policy of no spectators in the grounds of the Games, and the fact of not drawing attention to their representatives in an empty enclosure. In any case for the official side. As for the unofficial, there is no doubt that they also do not want to be wrongly assimilated to the Olympic Games that upset their fellow citizens …

Panasonic, Procter & Gamble or Toyota will boycott the ceremony

“I was asked to attend, but I will not,” said Tuesday Masakazu Tokura, who heads the employers’ union of Japanese companies, Keidanren. “I would like to enjoy the Olympic Games with my family, at home, like an ordinary citizen,” he explained. Among the other historic sponsors of the various Olympics, the leaders of Panasonic, Procter & Gamble and Toyota will also miss the opening ceremony.

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And the battle will not be played out only during the opening ceremony for these companies: some, like Toyota, have announced that they will not run several commercials as initially planned, and while these had already been shot.

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