International Olympic Committee
For International Olympic Committee (IOC) President Thomas Bach, the Olympic community has managed to turn what has been a unique and challenging 2020 into lessons and opportunities.
In his New Year’s video message sent to the Olympic community today, President Bach recalls how the role of sport in different aspects of society has been strengthened during the COVID-19 pandemic. Also judo stood up after its losses.
“The role of sport for physical and mental health, the role of sport for our social life, the role of sport for our economic life has been recognised widely,” he says.
This has been achieved through a number of initiatives, including the “#StayStrong #StayActive #StayHealthy” campaign, a new cooperation agreement with the World Health Organisation (WHO) and the “Healthy Together” campaign in partnership with the United Nations (UN) and WHO.
The IOC President reaffirms that Tokyo 2020 and Beijing 2022 will indeed be the priorities for the extraordinary Olympic year 2021.
“Tokyo is still the best prepared Olympic city ever. We can only thank our Japanese partners and friends for their great commitment and their determination, which is absolutely in line with our commitment and our determination to organise these Games in a safe and secure way for all the participants and to make these Olympic Games fit for the post-coronavirus world. We all will live unforgettable Games,” says Bach.
Further indication of the importance of sport and the Olympic values in today’s world can be drawn from one of the lessons learned in 2020, according to Bach: “We need more solidarity. We need more solidarity within societies, and we need more solidarity among societies.”
“And we will learn from this lesson and, by learning from this lesson of solidarity, we will turn the challenges of the future into opportunities again. In this spirit, we will carry forward the Olympic Agenda 2020 reforms to the future. I invite you to join us in these ongoing reforms and to live our motto of ‘change or be changed’ also in the years to come.”