Chinese President Xi Jinping promised support for a permanent UN police squad and African peacekeeping as he vowed a peaceful rise for the Asian power.
Paying his first-ever visit to the United Nations, Xi took a new step to address criticism that China has not taken responsibility in accordance with its growing size.
Xi said that China, which has increasingly joined multinational defense efforts, would take the lead in setting up an 8,000-troop permanent peacekeeping police squad that could be deployed at short notice.
Xi also announced $100 million in funding to the African Union to support a similar rapid reaction force, as well as a broader 10-year, $1 billion UN-China peace and development fund.
China's economy has soared in the past 15 years to become the largest after the United States, and the world's most populous nation has sought to be treated as a major global power.
But China's neighbors and the United States have voiced concern over Beijing's territorial claims, while Western nations have charged that Beijing's interest in poor nations is purely mercantile rather than focused on development.
Xi hit back in his speech, saying China was committed to peaceful development.
No matter how the international landscape may evolve and how strong China may become, China will never pursue hegemony, expansion or a sphere of influence, he said in the address to the United Nations.
Xi, however, said that the United Nations allowed all countries to choose their own sovereignty and development paths.
The comment was likely a veiled allusion to the frequent criticism of China's human rights record, which includes the imprisonment of democracy activists such as Nobel laureate Liu Xiaobo.
All countries are equals. The big, strong and rich should not bully the small, weak and poor, Xi said.
The law of the jungle leaves the weak at the mercy of the strong. It is not a way for countries to conduct their relations, Xi said. Those who adopt the high-handed approach of using force will find that they are only lifting a rock to drop on their own feet.
But overall Xi transmitted a conciliatory message on his trip to the United States, which comes amid growing jitters about the growth trajectory of China's economy. On Saturday he promised $2 billion in development assistance for poor nations as part of a UN-led effort to eradicate extreme poverty by 2030.
A day earlier on a state visit to Washington, Xi promised a more aggressive effort to combat climate change including a system to cap emissions.