Germany’s Merkel to visit Biden at White House on July 15

German Chancellor Angela Merkel sits down to attend a virtual event with Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte (not pictured) marking Liberation Day, the end of the occupation by Nazi Germany during World War Two, at the Chancellery in Berlin, Germany May 5, 2021. (ANNEGRET HILSE / POOL / AFP)

CARBIS BAY, England – US President Joe Biden will host German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Washington on July 15 to affirm “the deep bilateral ties”, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said on Friday.

A standoff over the completion of the US$11 billion Nord Stream 2 pipeline piping Russian gas to Europe has strained ties at a time when Berlin and Washington are eager to rebuild relations after former US president Donald Trump’s term

The announcement was made on the first day of the Group of Seven summit in England. Biden has hosted two other world leaders since taking office, Japan and South Korea.

ALSO READ: Merkel's slap down of US stance reveals allies' growing rift

Psaki said Biden and Merkel “will discuss their commitment to close cooperation on a range of common challenges, including ending the COVID-19 pandemic, addressing the threat of climate change, and promoting economic prosperity and international security based on our shared democratic values.”

A standoff over the completion of the US$11 billion Nord Stream 2 pipeline piping Russian gas to Europe has strained ties at a time when Berlin and Washington are eager to rebuild relations after former US president Donald Trump’s term.

The United States waived sanctions last month on the company behind the pipeline, Russian state energy firm Gazprom, giving Berlin and Washington three more months to resolve the dispute.