ISLAMABAD - Dr Hafeez Pasha, member Economic Advisory Council, on Saturday said that the federal government can not impose tax on assets according to the constitution of the country, which empowered the provinces to impose taxes on assets. The government was working to impose tax on the assets from the coming budget 2011-2012, however, due to the constitutional complexities; it could not impose it, as it is in provinces domain like the agricultural income. While talking to the media, he said there is need for legislation for taxation on assets and also to take provinces on board in this regard. He was of the view that taxation on assets could generate Rs 13 billion. The revenue collection target for the next financial year 2011-2012 would be around Rs 1950 billion, he added. As the provinces sought more time for consultation on agricultural tax, the Economic Advisory Council (EAC) Saturday offered their full support to the provinces for revenue generation mobilization efforts including the much-debated agricultural income. Talking to the media, after chairing a meeting of EAC, Federal Minister for Finance and Revenue Dr Abdul Hafeez Sheikh said that the negotiations for the agricultural tax are underway with the provincial governments. He further said that the provinces have sought more time for consultation over the agricultural tax in todays (Saturdays) meeting. Talking about the taxation measures, the finance minister made it clear that tax rates would not be increased in the upcoming budget for the next fiscal 2011-2012. He opined that the government is working to bring non-taxpayers into the tax net and no additional taxation burden would be put on the existing taxpayers of the country. On a question, Dr Sheikh said that bill is under consideration in US Congress in connection with aid for Pakistan, he added. Earlier, the Economic Advisory Council discussed in depth the issues of broadening of tax net, ensuring equity in tax system, overcoming energy shortages, capital markets and banking sector reforms and undertaking of key micro-economic reforms to improve competitiveness of industry and agriculture. Similarly, the working groups of EAC including Taxation, Energy, Capital Markets, International Trade, Banking Sector Reforms, Agriculture, International Competitiveness and Economic Growth presented operational budgetary proposals. The EAC decided that its core group would hold meetings with the representatives of the provincial governments to discuss about the revenue mobilization efforts including agricultural income tax at the provincial level. It was also discussed that public debt management would be improved to reduce burden on government exchequer in terms of debt servicing. It was decided that professional experts should be engaged to strengthen capacity of key institutions of the government. The meeting was attended by Dr Hafiz A Pasha (Convener EAC), Deputy Chairman, Planning Commission, Governor State Bank of Pakistan, Muhammad Hamayun Khan, Finance Minister (Khyber Pakhtunkhwa), and senior officials and members of EAC.