Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe announced his resignation today, owing to chronic health problems. Abe, 65, has battled ulcerative colitis for years. He previously resigned in 2007 due to similar health issues. A number of leaders from his Liberal Democratic Party have been identified as his potential successors. How will the resignation affect the Tokyo Olympics? Abe was responsible for Tokyo getting the right to host the 2020 Olympic Games which have since been postponed to 2021 because of the coronavirus pandemic. The pandemic has caused massive contraction in the Japanese economy and there are doubts as to whether the Games will take place next year. The Olympics delay has been estimated to create a cost of upto an extra $5.7 billion for Japan. This does not include the additional burden of the pandemic on the Japanese economy. Abe\u2019s resignation has added another complication to Japan\u2019s preparations for the Games. On his part Abe said \u201cWe must fulfill our responsibility as the host country of the Olympics. Of course, I believe my successor will work to host the Olympics under the same belief.\u201d However questions remain as to whether Abe\u2019s successor can lead the Games to a successful conclusion. Abe has been Japan\u2019s longest serving PM. Majority of the preparations for the Games have taken place under his leadership and supervision. Japan faces challenges on multiple fronts, including the pandemic, the economy, and an increasingly belligerent China. Big cost for cancelled Olympics Cancellation of the Games can be disastrous for the country. There have already been demands for a cancellation if the pandemic is not brought under control by the time. The Olympics have not faced such a situation since World War 2. The postponement was unprecedented and a cancellation will mean even more losses. The Japanese economy might take years take years to recover. Abe\u2019s inexperienced successor will certainly have a lot on his or her plate to prevent and mitigate such a situation. Meanwhile, Japan is reportedly stocking up on 521 million doses of Covid-19 vaccines before the 2021 Games. Five different vaccines have been included, should any one vaccine not be successful in clinical trials.