Screen Australia and the National Film and Sound Archive will be established as separate statutory authorities and are expected to begin operations as planned, on July1, 2008. The Bill, prioritized as an election commitment, was passed swiftly by both Houses of the new Australian Parliament on March 13, 2008. Screen Australia will function as the central funding body which brings together the Australian Film Commission, Film Finance Corporation and Film Australia. The centralized agency for the film and television industry is also expected to help Australian creative talent with competition from overseas. Peter Garrett, Minister for the Environment, Heritage and the Arts said, “Screen Australia will help restore investor confidence and put the industry on a new growth path. It will ensure a strong Australian voice across film, television, documentary and children’s programs.” The National Film and Sound Archive will be separated from the Australian Film Commission and will take on the role of a national collecting institution. The decision to establish the National Film and Sound Archive as a stand-alone agency was made to preserve its independence and to facilitate its work on building the national collection and increasing public access and outreach. Garett added, “I am looking forward to the fresh approach that these newly created agencies will bring to their respective roles. This is both an exciting and a challenging time for the Australian film and television industry.”