Chinese President Hu Jintao will attend a multi-nation summit on nuclear security in Washington later this month.
He has also agreed to top-level talks with Western powers about imposing sanctions on Iran.
It’s a significant shift by Beijing after months of fending off Western demands for concerted pressure on Tehran, which they accuse of trying to create the capacity to build nuclear weapons.
A new UN security council resolution involving sanctions against Iran is in the offing – with this in mind, Tehran’s top nuclear official arrived in Beijing earlier.
As one of the five permanent members of the Security Council, China would have the power to veto any resolution.
It has so far been reluctant to back new sanctions as Iran supplies much of its oil.