TOKYO: The Japanese government Wednesday proposed that foreign athletes entering Japan for the postponed Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics be exempted from a 14-day self-isolation currently required for all arrivals from abroad.
The athletes will be required to submit an activity schedule and a written pledge, according to a draft plan the government presented at the day’s meeting to discuss coronavirus measures for the Tokyo Games next summer.
The plan was endorsed by the Tokyo metropolitan government and the games organizing committee. It will be implemented starting with international sports events to be held in the country prior to the Olympics and Paralympics, delayed by a year from summer this year.
The plan envisions what is called Athlete Track to exempt foreign athletes from Japan’s coronavirus entry ban, the 14-day quarantine and other restrictions so that the Olympics and Paralympics will be held smoothly.
Under the plan, foreign athletes entering Japan will be required to take a coronavirus test within 72 hours before departure and get a certificate of a negative result. They will also need to take such a test again upon arrival.
With the certificate, athletes will be allowed to act in Japan in accordance with their activity schedules. Areas where they can go will be limited to sports venues, training fields and some other places.
Japan will decide how to deal with athletes who violate the rules.
Special vehicles will transport them between the athlete village and “host town” areas that accept athletes for training. The athletes will be requested not to use public transportation unless there is a compelling reason.
Japan will also consider whether to have all athletes use its COCOA contact-tracing smartphone app that informs users when they may have come into close contact with a coronavirus carrier.
Host towns and other municipalities with training camps will be required to create manuals including coronavirus preventive measures in accordance with a guide to be drawn up by the central government.