The annual pace of Irish inflation slowed somewhat to 8.6% in September from 9% in August, new official figures show, providing a glimmer of hope heading into a tough winter for households.
The Eurostat figures show Ireland's reading compares with the eurozone-wide average of 10%, which is up from August's reading of 9.1%.
At 6.2%, France again has the lowest inflation rate in the eurozone. That partly reflects the success of its government in subsidising household and business energy bills at an early stage in the crisis. However, the rate in Germany accelerated to 10.9% from 8.8% in the previous month, according to the figures.
The Eurostat figures show that energy costs continued to be the main driver of the annual inflation, but increased prices for food products and industrial goods may also suggest that price pressures were spreading out across the eurozone economy in September.
The latest figures are in line with the budget forecasts presented by Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe that Irish inflation will average 8.5% this year.
However, some economists have questioned the projections in the same Government forecasts that Irish inflation will remain at elevated levels through next year and post a reading of 7% through 2023.
They believe that because of the huge uncertainty over Russian gas supplies to the EU that the Government has put down something of an insurance policy in putting together its budget arithmetic.
The Netherlands, at over 17%, and Slovakia with 13.6% posted readings significantly above the eurozone average, according to the new figures. Malta, Finland and Luxembourg also had lower annual rates of inflation than Ireland's in the eurozone last month.
The Eurostat figures show that Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania have again posted the largest figures of as much as 24% because the three Baltic states are the most exposed to surging gas prices given their close ties to the energy networks from Russia.
The data are harmonised to make it easier to compare inflation numbers across Europe. The Irish figures do not automatically match the consumer price index measures of Irish inflation. The Central Statistics Office will publish its September consumer price index data in the coming weeks.