Chinese President Xi Jinping says he's willing to work with his South Korean counterpart Moon Jae-in on addressing differences between the two countries following months of angry rhetoric and economic retaliation over Seoul's deployment of a U.S. missile-defense system.

Xi's remarks came in a message on Thursday to Moon marking the 25th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Beijing and Seoul.

The official Xinhua News Agency quoted Xi as saying he was willing to make "concerted efforts" to improve relations but did not directly mention the missile-defense system known as THAAD.

Beijing has retaliated against Seoul by suspending visits to South Korea by Chinese tour groups and trips to China by South Korean entertainers. South Korean businesses have faced boycotts, especially the retail group Lotte which provided the land for THAAD.