All development on the Northern Range has been suspended after the recent flooding in the western part of Trinidad.
Planning Minister Dr Bhoe Tewarie said yesterday the country's development policy will now exclude all access above and below the usual 300-feet contour line.
"There will be no approval," he said.
Tewarie made the statement at the opening ceremony of the American Chamber of Trinidad and Tobago (AmCham) 16th annual Health, Safety, Security and Environment (HSSE) Conference and Exhibition at Hyatt Regency in Port of Spain.
The theme for this year's two-day conference is "HSSE Excellence—Pathway to Sustainable Development—Human, Economic and Environmental Progress".
"There will be no further development, no further construction on the Northern Range," said the Minister, adding that the relevant authorities will also be visiting existing structures to determine their legality.
Tewarie said the authorities would also crack down on illegal quarrying and other developments in order to preserve the Northern Range.
"We will do what we have to do," he said.
Tewarie, in addressing the HSSE issues, said new procurement legislation was being drafted based on the policy position adopted by Parliament earlier this year.
"HSSE matters, as they relate to workers and the condition of the work environment, the issue of labour standards and enlightened labour practices in the best interest of workers, has been fully taken into account," he said.
While Tewarie focused on the positive initiatives by the Government, Hugh Howard, president of AmCham, highlighted an inability to deal with crime.
"Crime continues to be a cause for grave concern," said Howard. "Detention and conviction rates leave a lot to be desired and this fact seems to embolden the perpetrators, who appear to carry out their nefarious acts with impunity."
He said several business organisations have made proposals to the relevant authorities to deal with the current "scourge".
"The urgent need for an effective crime plan and execution thereof cannot be overemphasised. We must recapture our beloved country from the criminal element--white collar and violent," he said.
While Howard said Government had the primary responsibility to deal with crime, he said other sectors should get on board.