China's inflation hit a seven-month high in September, government data showed Monday, leaving little room for policy maneuvering by its central bank amid the slowing economy.
The consumer price index, a main gauge of inflation, rose to 3.1 percent on-year in September, up from a 2.6 percent gain in August, the National Bureau of Statistics of China said.
The sharp rise in the September inflation rate was mainly driven by a 6.1 percent spike in food prices for the month, it said.
In the first nine months of this year, China's inflation rate averaged at 2.5 percent, below the government's full-year target of 3.5 percent, it said.
China's economy, the world's second-largest, expanded 7.7 percent last year, marking its worst performance in 13 years. In the second-quarter of this year, the Chinese economy also slowed to 7.5 percent from 7.7 percent three months earlier.
Still, Chinese leaders are increasingly putting their policy emphasis on stable growth, as part of their efforts to ease social imbalances and address environmental woes.