Potential investors have been asked to consider the Illawarra as the perfect place to do business during an Advantage Wollongong forum held at Parliament House in Sydney on Thursday night.
Wollongong Lord Mayor Gordon Bradbery said interest in the region from national and international companies had been high.
"We weren't playing around with Mickey Mouse stuff, this was top of the line investment," he said.
Members of the NSW cabinet, including Premier Mike Baird, attended the forum, along with investors.
Cr Bradbery said the Illawarra's low costs, proximity to Sydney and Canberra, and its idyllic lifestyle were promoted at the forum.
He said since it was established two years ago, Advantage Wollongong had helped contribute more than $1 billion worth of investment to the region.
"As a result we have created a lot of interest and money coming into the region, more specifically in the Wollongong CBD," he said.
"The fact is the city is very connected, it's only an hour and a bit south of Sydney.
"One of our best assets is we're not far from the international airport but far enough to have point of difference - we don't have traffic congestion like the metropolitan area does."
Cr Bradbery said it was important to host investment forums to counter bad publicity stemming from the continuing decline of some heavy industrial businesses in the Illawarra.
"If we're going to make ourselves more resilient to downturns in various industries we've got to be diverse," he said.