German public broadcasters ARD and ZDF have reached a voluntary agreement with the national producer associations which will see the first exploitation cycle for TV rights on funded cinema co-productions reduced from seven years to five.

Following the signing of the agreement with the Arbeitsgemeinschaft Neuer Deutscher Spielfilmproduzenten e.V. and the Verband Deutscher Spielfilmproduzenten e.V. , Joern Klamroth, managing director of ARD's film purchasing arm Degeto, declared that the public TV channels were "hereby making a further contribution to the strengthening of of the independent producers".

Meanwhile, ZDF's director of programmes Hans Janke commented that the agreement reached was proof that the stations and feature film associations "can come to reasonable contractual conditions on their own initiative.

In an allusion to proposals from State Culture Minister Julian Nida-Ruemelin to require the public and private broadcasters to increase their financial contribution to the German Federal Film Board (FFA) from the present annual Euros 22m, Janke declared that there was "no need" for "more extensive state regulatory measures - such as within a revision of the Film Funding Law".