China's consumer prices rose 6.2 percent in August from a year earlier, the government said, down from July when the politically sensitive rate hit a more than three-year high of 6.5 percent.
The August reading may ease concerns over inflation -- which the government has been struggling to tame -- but analysts warned the consumer price index (CPI) was still likely to remain high for some time.
Announcing the latest CPI data, the National Bureau of Statistics on Friday said that year-on-year food price rises slowed to 13.4 percent from 14.8 percent in July.
The government has implemented a number of measures over the past year to try to slow inflation, including restricting the amount of money banks can lend and hiking interest rates five times since October.
Analysts said these policies appeared to have had an impact, but warned that inflation -- while expected to drop -- was still likely to remain elevated.
"We are assured it is a peak for this year but any falling back would be very slow," said Yao Wei, a Hong Kong-based economist with Societe Generale.
"CPI is likely to stay above five percent for a long period of time, which is not good news for the central bank."
The government had originally set a target of four percent for inflation in 2011.
But Premier Wen Jiabao has reportedly admitted it will be difficult to keep CPI within the target, and has said he hopes to keep the level under five percent with "hard work".
"Overall, we expect price pressures to ease over the next three to six months," Brian Jackson, senior emerging markets strategist at the Royal Bank of Canada, told AFP.
"But today's is only one month's data. Inflation could bounce back. There's a chance they might tighten policy further if inflation doesn't slow as fast as they'd like."
Yao said she expected the government to adjust some of the policies it has implemented to tame inflation, such as lowering the amount of money some individual banks must keep in reserve.
"But we believe cutting the overall level of reserve requirements or interest rates is unlikely in the short term," she said.