Japan is set to test using proof of vaccination against COVID-19 at major baseball and football stadiums in a bid to evaluate the feasibility of easing capacity restrictions.

In October, the country will trial the proposal as it continues to see COVID-19 cases decline, as reported by officials of Nippon Professional Baseball (NPB) and the J-League, who met with the Minister of State for Economic and Fiscal Policy, Yasutoshi Nishimura.

"We'd like to make further adjustments and conduct the experiment at an appropriate time," said Nishimura when speaking with NPB secretary general Atsushi Ihara and J-League chairman Mitsuru Murai, according to Kyodo News.

Murai said the pilot programme could start on October 1 in football, while Ihara said the NPB would like to start the experiment by the end of the same month.

As it stands, a maximum of 5,000 spectators can attend professional baseball and football matches in Tokyo and other areas subject to any COVID-19 state of emergency.

Once these states of emergency conclude in 19 prefectures - expected by the end of September - the cap for major sporting events will be increased to 10,000.

The cap could be increased more if proof of COVID-19 vaccination or a negative test is implemented.

"No one can predict how the infection situation will change, so I explained what kind of mitigation can be taken in accordance with the situation," said Ihara following the meeting with Nishimura.

A similar scheme is planned by the Japanese Government in restaurants, live music venues and other places with large crowds in preparation for relaxing restrictions.

To date, there have been more than 1.69 million confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Japan, resulting in the deaths of over 17,500 people.

Source: https://www.insidethegames.biz