Tokyo Games Contract
Some time ago Reuters published sections of the “Host City Contract” that Tokyo signed with the IOC. Advantage IOC is an understatement.
Let’s assume that the contract was written and signed by both parties in good faith. In light of the events of the past 15 months, how can Mme. Hidalgo sign something similar for Paris (probably already signed) or the Los Angeles City Council and Mayor Garcetti sign for LA 2028? Calling Brisbane – get out while you can!
Key provisions of the Host City Contract:
* The Olympics Games and all relevant rights – including broadcasting, reproduction, and staging rights - are the exclusive property of the IOC.
* The organisers must protect the IOC from any damages or claims related to the organising of the Games. This means the organisers may compensate the IOC for the damages they suffer, as well as payments the IOC is asked to make by third parties such as Olympic sponsors or broadcasters.
* The IOC can make changes to the Olympic program at any time. Such changes may include adding or deleting sports. The organisers bear the cost of those changes.
* Only the IOC can cancel the Olympics. The reason for doing so could be one of the following:
- Tokyo is not in a state to host the Olympics, such as being in the midst of a war or civil disorder;
- The IOC believes that the safety of the participants would be seriously threatened;
- The organisers breach the contract or any other applicable law.
But wait, there’s more!! Last week the Washington Post published a piece by sports correspondent Sally Jenkins. Among other revelations about the contract:
“it leaves host nations with crippling debts. Seven pages are devoted to “medical services” the host must provide — free of charge — to anyone with an Olympic credential, including rooms at local hospitals expressly reserved for them and only them. Tokyo organizers have estimated they will need to divert about 10,000 medical workers to service the IOC’s demands.”
Clearly this is impossible under current conditions. Will Tokyo be in breach of contract if they fail to supply VIP medical services to the entire “Olympic Family”? At the expense of their own citizens? “Ohayo gozaimasu, Thomas Bach. Welcome to Tokyo. We have news for you…”