ActiveState and Microsoft have just done up a 3-year contract for Perl Open Source development and support for Windows.
ActiveState will add features such as full Unicode support for Windows. In addition, what ActiveState refers to as a "significant amount of the development effort" will be released as open source code.
Betas of the next release are scheduled for August 1999.
You can see the press release on the ActiveState site at: http://www.activestate.com/press/releases/Microsoft.htm