China President Xi Jinping has congratulated Joe Biden on his election as U.S. president, China's official Xinhua News Agency reported on its website Thursday.

Promoting healthy and stable development of China-U.S. relations not only serves the fundamental interests of the people in both countries, but also meets the common expectation of the international community, Xi said.

Xi said he hopes that the two sides will uphold the spirit of nonconflict, nonconfrontation, mutual respect and win-win cooperation, focus on cooperation, manage differences, advance the healthy and stable development of China-U.S. ties, and join hands with other countries and the international community to promote the noble cause of world peace and development.

China vice president Wang Qishan sent a message to Kamala Harris to congratulate her on election as U.S. vice president.

Xi's message was sent late Wednesday. He said he hoped the two countries could work closely and settle differences.

China state news media said Xi called on Biden to help him promote "healthy and stable" developments in the relationship between the two nations. Xi said cooperation would serve the "fundamental interests" of people from both countries and the international community.

Xi's message to Biden comes three weeks after the U.S. presidential elections. This makes him one of the last world leaders to congratulate Biden.

China's Foreign Ministry did send its congratulations to Biden earlier but it didn't include a personal message from Xi. Political analysts said Xi may have been playing his hand more cautiously as he was likely waiting on the results of President Donald Trump's attempts to challenge Biden's win.

While Trump still refuses to concede his administration has approved the start of the formal transition process. U.S. states, where Trump has challenged, have also recently been certified to have correctly counted Biden's votes.

Analysts said Xi sent Trump the same message in 2016. Under Trump, the U.S. and China have been engaged in a trade battle that has spilled over into many sectors.

During his campaign, Biden said he intended to maintain a tough stance with China. Biden referred to Xi as nothing more than a "thug." Analysts said they expected Biden to "tone down" the country's anti-China rhetoric and possibly even restart trade negotiations.