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Will the Olympics Go On? Japan’s Businesses Would Like to Know

来源:纽约时报    2020-03-19 04:55

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        TOKYO — Toshiya Fujita just wants somebody to make a decision already.        东京——藤田俊也(Toshiya Fujita,音)只是想有人早点做出决定。
        Mr. Fujita, the managing director of a leather goods wholesaler in Tokyo, is trying to figure out how many Olympics key chains to order. Like hundreds of business managers in Japan, he is caught in a will-they-or-won’t-they guessing game about whether the Tokyo Olympics will be staged this summer even as the coronavirus continues its deadly march around the globe.        藤田先生是东京一家皮革制品批发商的总经理,他正在试图弄清楚该订购多少条奥运钥匙链。他和日本的数百名企业经理一样,在新型冠状病毒继续肆虐全球之际,陷入了一场对东京奥运会是否会在今年夏季如期举办的猜测游戏。
        An increasing number of athletes, experts and ordinary people in Japan are convinced that the Games cannot be held. But the Japanese organizers and the International Olympic Committee have steadfastly maintained that the show will go on, with the committee saying on Tuesday that “there is no need for any drastic decisions at this stage.”        越来越多的日本运动员、专家和普通民众深信,不可能举办奥运会。但日本奥组委和国际奥委会却一直坚称,奥运会将如期进行。国际奥委会周二说,“目前阶段没有必要做出任何断然决定。”
        The uncertainty has left a whole ecosystem surrounding the Games stuck in a holding pattern. Businesses as large as Coca-Cola, Toyota, Samsung and Google, which are sponsoring the event, and as small as hotels, Airbnb operators, security companies and travel agents are simultaneously preparing for the Games while bracing for their possible cancellation.        这种不确定性让围绕奥运会的整个生态系统陷入了等待状态。从可口可乐、丰田汽车、三星和谷歌这样的大赞助商,到酒店、Airbnb经营者、安保公司和旅行社等小企业,都在为奥运会做准备的同时,也在为赛事可能取消做准备。
        Mr. Fujita’s company, Moriya, is among them. “If the Games are canceled, we will end up having leftover products,” he said. “So we would appreciate it if we get some direction in March about whether the Games will be held or not.”        藤田的公司Moriya就是其中之一。“如果奥运会取消,我们将剩下很多卖不出去的产品,”他说。“因此,如果能在3月份得到奥运会是否将如期举行的动向,我们将不胜感激。”
        Japan has huge financial incentives to delay a decision as long as possible, gambling that there will be a drastic change in the course of the coronavirus, which has killed nearly 8,000 people around the world. An outright cancellation of the Games, which are scheduled to begin in late July, could be economically disastrous for a country already on the brink of recession.        日本有巨大的经济诱因来尽可能地推迟做决定的时间,并押注新冠病毒的进程将出现急剧变化,这种病毒已在世界各地造成近8000人死亡。断然取消原定于7月下旬开幕的奥运会,对这个已经处于衰退边缘的国家来说,可能会导致经济灾难。
        Jun Saito, senior research fellow at the Japan Center for Economic Research, said the country had invested between $32 billion and $41 billion in building competition venues and adding hotel capacity.        日本经济研究中心(Japan Center for Economic Research)高级研究员斋藤润(Jun Saito)说,日本在建设竞赛场馆和增加酒店客容量上已投入了320亿至410亿美元。
        “The financial burden of these public companies who have invested in expectation of the Games is going to be very significant,” Mr. Saito said.        “对于那些为奥运会投了资、指望奥运会开幕的上市公司来说,财务负担将会非常沉重,”斋藤润说。
        Some businesses have already been damaged by the suggestion that the Olympics will be affected. “It’s a mess,” said Toru Suzuki, the owner of Fukuyoshi Ryokan, an inn in the Ueno neighborhood of Tokyo.        奥运会将受影响的说法已经给一些企业造成了损害。“情况一团糟,”东京上野区福吉日式旅馆(Fukuyoshi Ryokan)的老板铃木彻(Toru Suzuki,音)说。
        He said he had no bookings for the Olympic period, on top of a current 70 to 80 percent collapse in business as tourists from China and elsewhere cease to travel. “With cancellations one after another for April, we don’t have any reservations after that,” Mr. Suzuki said.        他说,由于来自中国和其他地方的游客停止了旅行,目前业务萎缩了70%至80%,此外,没有奥运期间的任何预订。铃木说:“4月的预订陆续取消,在那之后我们没有任何预订。”
        For others, hope of big profits has turned into fear for the future. Tsuyoshi and Izumi Fukase built a new house on Enoshima, an island off Tokyo where Olympic sailing events are scheduled to be held, in the hopes of renting it to athletes or fans.        对另外一些人来说,对大笔利润的期待已经化为对未来的恐惧。奥运帆船比赛安排在在东京都附近的江之岛(Enoshima)举行,深瀬刚和妻子深瀬泉(Tsuyoshi and Izumi Fukase,音)在那里建造了一座新房子,希望将其出租给运动员或球迷。
        They said that, for now, athletes from Germany have booked the two-bedroom home for the duration of the Games.        他们说,目前,已有来自德国的运动员预订了奥运会期间这座带两个卧室的房子。
        “If the Games are canceled or postponed, we will be devastatingly worn down by the coronavirus,” Mr. Fukase said. “We were expecting record profits, so this huge blow financially would affect us severely.” He said the couple were worried about being able to cover their mortgage.        “如果奥运会被取消或推迟,我们将被冠状病毒的灾难拖垮。”深濑刚说。“我们原本期望获得创纪录的利润,所以这种巨大的财务打击将严重影响我们。”他说,他们夫妇担心能否偿还抵押贷款。
        The Olympics have stood virtually alone in the sports world as major events like the Kentucky Derby and the French Open have been postponed or canceled and even the deputy chief of the Japanese Olympic Committee, Kozo Tashima, has contracted the coronavirus.        在体育界,随着肯塔基德比(Kenturky Derby)和法国网球公开赛这样的重大赛事被推迟或取消,奥运会是唯一仅存的重大体育活动,而现在,甚至连日本奥委会副主席田嶋幸三(Kozo Tashima)也染上了冠状病毒。
        After speaking with the leaders of the Group of 7 countries on Monday, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said he wanted to go forward with the Olympics “as proof that the human race will conquer the new coronavirus,” adding that the leaders supported his position.        周一,首相安倍晋三在与七国集团(G7)领导人交谈后表示,他希望奥运会继续举办,“作为人类将征服新型冠状病毒的证据”,还说各国领导人支持他的立场。
        Such statements have fed a sense of cognitive dissonance that pervades many discussions of the Olympics’ fate.        这样的说法助长了一种认知失调感,它弥漫在许多关于这届奥运会命运的讨论中。
        On Tuesday, Japan’s organizing committee said that its chairman, Yoshiro Mori, would not travel to Greece for the Olympic torch handover ceremony because of concerns about the spread of the virus in Europe. Along the route for the torch relay in Japan, which is set to begin on March 26, the committee is barring the public from events welcoming runners in three prefectures and has asked those with symptoms to stay away from the course.        日本奥组委周二表示,由于担心该病毒在欧洲的传播,主席森喜朗(Yoshiro Mori)不会前往希腊参加奥运会的火炬交接仪式。在定于3月26日开始的日本火炬传递路线上,该委员会禁止三个县的公众参加欢迎火炬手的活动,并要求有症状的人远离活动路线。
        Many of the qualifying events for Olympic slots have been canceled or moved, and some athletes have been unable to train because of lockdowns in their countries — challenges that the International Olympic Committee acknowledged on Tuesday.        国际奥委会周二承认遇到挑战——许多资格赛已被取消或改期,还有些运动员由于所在国家实施封锁而无法训练。
        Experts said the committee and Japanese officials should concede to reality and announce a postponement or cancellation of the Games.        专家说,委员会和日本官员应该接受现实,宣布推迟或取消奥运会。
        “We would all like it to be a different outcome,” said Nancy Snow, a professor of public diplomacy at Kyoto University of Foreign Studies. “But this is the inevitable, and they need to pull the plug now.”        “我们都不希望这样的结局,”京都外国语大学公共外交教授南希·斯诺(Nancy Snow)说。“但这是不可避免的,他们现在需要放弃。”
        “They have to show that they are taking this seriously and are willing to self-sacrifice,” Ms. Snow added.        斯诺还说:“他们必须表明他们正在重视这件事,并愿意作出牺牲。”
        Some said that a delay of a year, although a logistical nightmare, would be the best course.        有人说,推迟一年举行尽管实施起来像个噩梦,但也是最好的选择。
        “I think there is good reason that Japan could argue that it is just not fair” to cancel the Games altogether, said Takuji Okubo, North Asia director of the Economist Corporate Network.        经济学人企业网络(Economist Corporate Network)北亚总监大久保琢史(Takuji Okubo)说,对于彻底取消这届奥运会,“我认为日本完全有理由认为这是不公平的。”
        “You would leave a very bad precedent for the Olympic Committee so the next city and the city after that would be aware of this risk,” which might deter future cities from bidding to host the Games, he added.        他还说:“这将给奥委会留下一个非常糟糕的先例,那么下一个以及之后的主办城市将意识到这种风险。”这可能使未来的城市不敢竞争主办城市。
        As the Japanese government and the organizing committee push to keep the Games on for 2020, they are relying in part on Japan’s relatively low reported rate of coronavirus infections and deaths.        随着日本政府和组委会努力争取在2020年继续举办奥运会,他们在一定程度上依赖日本报告的相对较低的冠状病毒感染和死亡率。
        So far, Japan has confirmed 882 cases and 29 deaths, far fewer than many other countries. But the country also has a relatively low rate of testing for the virus. Japan has conducted 32,125 tests in the past month, about the number that neighboring South Korea conducted in three days during the peak of its outbreak.        迄今为止,日本已确诊882例,死亡29例,远少于许多其他国家。但是该国对该病毒的检测率也相对较低。在过去一个月中,日本进行了32125次测试,大约是邻国韩国在疫情暴发高峰期三天的检测量。
        As a result, some analysts said, visitors might be wary of coming to Japan, wondering whether there are thousands of undetected cases.        一些分析人士说,游客可能会因此担心去日本,不知道是否还有成千上万的病例未被发现。
        “We are not 100 percent sure everything is really under control in Japan,” said Eunjung Lim, an associate professor of international relations at Kongju National University in Gongju, South Korea, who specializes in Japan and South Korea.        韩国公州市公州国立大学专门研究日韩的国际关系副教授林恩贞(Eunjung Lim,音)说:“我们不是百分百确定日本的一切都在掌控之中。”
        Ms. Lim said that Japan’s handling of the quarantine of the Diamond Princess cruise ship in Yokohama, in which more than 700 people were infected and eight people have died, has also cast a shadow over Japan’s reputation for managing outbreaks.        林恩贞说,日本对横滨“钻石公主”号邮轮的隔离处理使700多人感染,8人死亡,这也给日本在控制疫情方面的声誉蒙上了阴影。
        Japan, too, may not want to invite visitors from hard-hit regions in Europe or, if things get much worse, the United States. Largely unaffected countries in South America might soon start to see a surge in cases. On Wednesday, Japan expanded its border controls on visitors from China, South Korea, Italy and Iran to include parts of Spain and Switzerland and all of Iceland.        同样,日本可能不想邀请来自欧洲重灾区的来访者,或者也不会邀请美国来访者,如果那里的情况变得更糟的话。南美大部分国家未受影响,但可能很快就会看到病例激增的趋势。周三,日本增加了边境管制,除了来自中国、韩国、意大利和伊朗的旅客外,还包括了西班牙和瑞士的部分地区以及整个冰岛。
        On Wednesday in Parliament, Taro Aso, Japan’s finance minister, said it “would not make sense” to hold the Olympics if athletes from many countries could not attend.        日本财务大臣麻生太郎周三在国会表示,如果许多国家的运动员无法参加,举办奥运会“将毫无意义”。
        “As the prime minister said, it’s desirable to hold the Olympics in an environment where everyone feels safe and happy,” said Mr. Aso, who is also deputy prime minister. “But that’s not something Japan alone can decide.”        “正如首相所说,当然希望在每个人都感到安全和快乐的环境中举办奥运会,”兼任副首相的麻生说。“但这不是只靠日本就能决定的。”
        According to a poll this week by Kyodo News, a Japanese news service, close to 70 percent of Japanese say the Tokyo Games cannot go on as scheduled. And some people are already anticipating a change.        根据日本新闻社共同社(Kyodo News)本周的一项民意调查,近70%的日本人认为东京奥运会无法如期举行。而且有些人已经在期待改变。
        On Tuesday afternoon at an official Olympics store just steps away from Shinjuku Station in Tokyo, a handful of people browsed shelves full of branded merchandise ranging from T-shirts and sneakers to traditional cast-iron teakettles.        周二下午,在离东京新宿站仅几步之遥的一家奥运官方商店里,只有寥寥数人在浏览货架,上面摆满了从T恤衫、运动鞋到传统铸铁茶壶的品牌商品。
        In the months since the coronavirus first appeared, tourism to Japan has slowed to a trickle, and foot traffic at the shop has dropped by about 80 percent, according to one employee.        据一名员工称,自从新冠病毒首次出现以来的几个月里,日本的旅游业已几近止步,商店的人流量下降了约80%。
        Jun Yoshikawa, 60, visited the store on his lunch break to buy a key holder.        60岁的吉川润(Jun Yoshikawa,音)在午休时间造访该店,购买了钥匙扣。
        Although he won tickets to see the Olympics diving competition through an official lottery, he figures the Games might be delayed. “So I better go ahead and get something as a keepsake,” he said.        虽然他通过抽签买到了奥运会跳水比赛的门票,但他认为奥运会可能会推迟。他说:“所以我最好先来这里买点东西当作纪念。”

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