Sporting events to Japan

Trends and opportunities

The market

Sport is becoming an important part of people’s lives in Japan. 40.4 per cent of the adult population regularly participated in some form of sport in 2015 and the government is aiming to increase this figure to 65 per cent within the next 10 years. Japan’s record medal tally at the 2016 Rio Olympics further generated significant interest in sports across Japanese society, now focused on the nation’s preparations for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics. (Source:

In 2011, the Japanese Government made a comprehensive revision to the Basic Act on Sport for the first time in 50 years and established Japan’s first Sport Basic Plan in March 2012. The goal of the Sport Basic Plan is to create a society where all people can enjoy a happy and fulfilled life through sport. The 10-year plan aims to achieve the following agenda through coordination and cooperation amongst national government agencies, local governments, schools, sport organisations, private companies and other entities involved in sport:

  • increasing sport opportunities for children
  • promotion of sport activities in line with life stages
  • improvement of community sport environments where residents can actively participate
  • training human resources and developing the sport environments in order to enhance international competitiveness
  • promotion of international exchanges and contributions through bids for and holding of international competitions such as the Olympic and Paralympic Games
  • improvement in the transparency and fairness/equity in the sporting world
  • creation of a virtuous cycle in the sporting world.

(Source: Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology, The Sport Basic Plan, July 2012).


Japan offers significant commercial opportunities for Australian businesses with demonstrated experience in delivering global sporting events, including world-class sporting technologies, services, knowledge and products.

2019 Rugby World Cup

In September and October 2019, Japan will host the first Rugby World Cup held in the Asian region. It is estimated the Rugby World Cup is likely to generate JPY168 to 278 billion in economic activity for the Japanese economy (Source: Japan Rugby 2019 Tournament Organiser, Recommendation on the Benefits to Regional Society on Attracting Major Sporting Events, May 2013). Major construction projects are expected to be commissioned generating opportunities around stadium design and refurbishment, security management, event management, sports training, clothing and products. Matches will be held in 12 cities across Japan – Tokyo, Yokohama, Sapporo, Kamaishi, Kumagaya, Shizuoka, Toyota, Higashi Osaka, Kobe, Fukuoka, Oita and Kumamoto. 

2020 Tokyo Olympics

On 7 September 2013 Tokyo was selected by the International Olympic Committee as the host city for the 2020 Summer Olympic and Paralympic Games. The Tokyo 2020 Bid Committee estimates that hosting the 2020 Olympics will generate close to A$30 billion in economic activity for the Tokyo metropolitan area hosting events (Source: The Tokyo Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games, 12 September 2014).

The 2020 Tokyo Olympics will create significant opportunities for Australian businesses with an established track record in major sporting events across multiple sectors including strategic advisory work, sustainability, security, event management, venue design, training, construction and operations. Japan regards Australia’s national sporting prowess positively and there are opportunities for consultancies in developing training regimes for high performance athletes or disabled sports men and women. Several Australian consultants played a key role in developing Tokyo’ successful 2020 Olympics bid proposal and Australian companies are continuing to push for future specialist advisory businesses.

Links and industry contacts

Sport-related resources

Japan Rugby 2019 Tournament Organiser
Tokyo 2020

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