The Middle East and North Africa, nuclear safety and economic recovery topped the agenda of G8 leaders meeting in Deauville, France on 26 and 27 May.
Commission President José Manuel Barroso and President of the European Council, Herman Van Rompuy, were there to represent the EU.
Also up for discussion - the G8's partnership with Africa, the environment, peace and security and − for the first time − the socio-economic impact of the Internet.
The EU came to Deauville with clear priorities. At the summit's close, it had firm commitments that the G8 partners would match its efforts.
Supporting democratic transition
In the new Deauville Partnership, G8 countries will work with partners in the southern Mediterranean embarking on political and economic reform. Alongside this, the EU will give support through its Partnership for Democracy and Shared Prosperity .
G8 countries and multilateral development banks pledged $20bn in backing for democratic reform, with the EU offering new funding - an additional €1.24bn in grants between now and 2013 - as part of its revamped neighbourhood policy .
Promoting safety standards for nuclear energy
The G8 endorsed the EU's call for worldwide stress tests on nuclear power plants as part of a review of international safety standards. All 143 nuclear power plants in the EU are set to undergo stress tests from June.
Deepening relations with Africa
The first ever joint declaration on human rights, democratic governance and sustainable development with African leaders reflects the EU's wish for a partnership based on mutual accountability and transparency. The Commission will table legislative proposals in October that oblige companies to publish information on their activities in African countries.
Improving multilateralism and global policy making
The G8 partners shared the EU's resolve to strengthen the multilateral system and liberalise free trade in line with the World Trade Organisation's 2001 Doha mandate, which calls for a fair global trade deal.
Founded in 1975, the G8 is an informal group of advanced economies that meets once a year to discuss issues of mutual or global concern. The EU participates - as well as individual EU countries France, Italy, Germany and the UK.