Law shuffles 2020 holidays to mitigate Olympic traffic

Jiji Press TOKYO (Jiji Press) — The Diet enacted on Wednesday a bill to move certain holidays to the opening day of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and the days before and after the Games’ opening and closing ceremonies.

The measure is intended to facilitate traffic control.

The bill to amend the special law for the Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics was approved by a majority vote at a plenary meeting of the House of Councillors with support mainly from the ruling Liberal Democratic Party and the major opposition Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan. It passed the House of Representatives in late May.

Traffic needs to be regulated when Tokyo hosts the opening and closing ceremonies as a great number of athletes and foreign leaders will be traveling in the Japanese capital.

Turning the ceremony and adjacent days into public holidays is expected to help reduce the number of commuters and make it easier to implement security measures.

Effective only in 2020, Sports Day, normally set on the second Monday of October, will be moved to July 24, a Friday and the day of the opening ceremony.

Marine Day, set on the third Monday of July, will be moved to July 23, a Thursday and the day before the opening ceremony.

Mountain Day, fixed on Aug. 11, will be moved to Aug. 10, a Monday and the day after the closing ceremony.

The three holidays will be put back to their original dates from 2021 onward.Speech

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