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Secretary and Deputy Secretaries

Biography of Ms Harinder Sidhu

Harinder Sidhu is Deputy Secretary, Service Delivery Group in the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. In this role, she serves as the Department’s Chief Operating Officer. She is also the senior Champion for Culturally and Linguistically Diverse staff in DFAT.

From 2016 to 2020, Harinder held the post of Australia’s High Commissioner to India and Ambassador to the Kingdom of Bhutan. Prior to her posting to India, she headed the Multilateral Policy Division in the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

Harinder brings over 30 years’ experience in government across several APS agencies. Between 2008 and 2013, she held the post of First Assistant Secretary in the Department of Climate Change. Before that, she was an Assistant Director-General in the Office of National Assessments (2004-2008). She also held Senior Adviser positions on Defence and on Fiscal Policy in the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet between 1999 and 2004.

Harinder has served overseas at Australian Embassies in Damascus and Moscow, and was also posted to Cairo where she studied the Arabic language. She holds degrees in Economics and Law from the University of Sydney.

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