Joachim Bitterlich has held several positions in the German Government. He joined the Federal Foreign Office in 1976 and was posted to Algiers, Brussels (Permanent Representation to the European Communities) before becoming Adviser in the private office of the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Hans-Dietrich Genscher, in 1985.
In 1987, he became policy adviser to the Federal Chancellor Helmut Kohl's Office, first as Head of the European Policy Department, then as Director General of Foreign Policy, Economic Cooperation and External Security and European, Foreign and Security Policy Adviser to the Chancellor. In 1998, Mr Bitterlich became Permanent Representative of the Federal Republic of Germany to the North Atlantic Council in Brussels. Subsequently, he was appointed Ambassador to the Kingdom of Spain and to the Principality of Andorra.
Mr Bitterlich joined Veolia Environment in 2003. He became a member of the Board of Administration of Veolia Environmental Services and of Veolia Transport (until 2011) and was appointed Executive Vice President International Affairs in Paris. In addition he was Chairman of Veolia Environment Germany from 2009 to 2012. He is today an independent consultant and a member of different public and private boards.
He studied Law, Economics and Politics at the University of Saarbrücken and he is a graduate from the Ecole Nationale d'Administration (ENA), Paris.