Sydney Lord Mayor Clover Moore is optimistic a NSW parliamentary inquiry will properly investigate what can be done to "give life back" to the city's nightlife.
Ms Moore on Monday gave evidence at the inquiry which is re-examining Sydney's controversial lockout laws as part of a review of the city's night-time economy.
"There's an understanding that the lockout laws - whilst a circuit-breaker at the time - have taken the oxygen out of Sydney's night-time economy," the lord mayor later told reporters.
The state government introduced the laws in 2014 in response to alcohol-fuelled violence and they're supported by emergency service workers who say lockouts save lives.
But the city council, in its submission to the inquiry, said there had been a 10 per cent drop in under-35s visiting Sydney annually since 2013.
It also suggested there'd been a 50 per cent drop in the number of venues dedicated to live music.
Ms Moore attributed those figures to the city having "no life after dark".
"There is a real opportunity now to put Sydney back on the map in terms of the creative life of our city, the diversity in our city and the after-dark life of our city," she said.
NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian was quick to question the lord mayor's figures, however.
"That's just not the facts, the facts show otherwise," the Liberal leader told reporters.
"There was an independent report the mayor put forward last year and I was pleased to read it said Sydney had the highest number of tourists in all categories and that will continue."