Japan to raise cap on VIP groups for Tokyo Games

NHK has learned that the Japanese government plans to raise the limit on the size of foreign high-level delegations visiting the country for the Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics.

The government initially set a 12-person cap on delegations led by heads of state or other dignitaries. The limit is intended to reduce the risk of coronavirus infections.

But the government plans to review the rule after considering complaints that the ceiling is too strict for such groups to provide sufficient security for dignitaries.

The government will likely increase the limit to 18 in principle and lift it further to 40 if necessary.

The government will likely ask delegation members to be vaccinated against the coronavirus before departing for Japan. It is also expected to strongly recommend they limit their stays in the country to within five days and four nights.

The government will likely allow delegations to use public transport for long-distance travel in the country. But it is expected to ask them to rent entire train cars for such trips or take other measures in order to avoid contact with other passengers.

The government plans to explain these new rules to foreign embassy officials as early as Friday and ask them to ensure their delegations abide by the regulations.