Energy prices were down 11.5 percent from a year earlier, when the cost of fuel and electricity had risen nearly 35 percent due to tight energy supplies amid Russia’s war in Ukraine. Food prices rose 6.9 percent, about half as much as a year ago.

Excluding food and energy prices, so-called core inflation rose 3.6 percent, a much slower pace than previous months.

The governments of France, Germany and Spain have been working to reduce food and energy bills to help consumers affected by the cost of living crisis. In Belgium, prices contracted sharply for the second consecutive month. “The disinflation process is happening even faster than we expected,” Bert Colijn, senior eurozone economist at ING Bank, said in a note to clients. “This shows that signs of an imminent victory for the European Central Bank on inflation are increasing.”

German inflation fell more than expected, to 2.3 percent from a year earlier, helped by easing price pressures in all sectors of the economy. The government has been subsidizing food and energy to households, but that program will soon end.

In Spain, the annual inflation rate fell to 3.2 percent in November as a result of cheaper fuel and deeply discounted travel deals in the tourism industry, a big driver of growth.

Inflation in the French economy was 3.8 percent in November from a year earlier, compared with 4.5 percent in October, Eurostat said.

“It is a true success to have managed to control inflation in two years. In the 1970s it took 10 years,” Economy Minister Bruno Le Maire said Thursday in an interview on France Inter radio. “The price to pay is higher interest rates, more difficult financing and, therefore, an economic slowdown,” he added.

Christine Lagarde, president of the central bank, said last month that while inflation has been falling sharply, “prices are still expected to remain too high for too long and domestic price pressures remain strong.”

The central bank has raised interest rates since July 2022 to curb rising inflation caused by a spike in energy prices last year. Interest rates rose from below zero and are now at the highest level in the central bank’s two-decade history.

But Europe faces a prolonged economic slowdown as high interest rates and the lingering impact of Russia’s war in Ukraine continue to dampen activity. The eurozone economy grew at an anemic annual rate of just 0.1 percent from July to September, compared with noticeably faster growth during that same period in the United States.

The slowdown highlights the challenges facing policymakers at the European Central Bank, which last month halted its campaign of interest rate hikes amid signs the region’s economy has weakened.

Officials are now focusing on how long they will need to keep interest rates high to bring inflation down to the central bank’s target of 2 percent. They are still worried about factors such as wage growth and possible spikes in the energy market that could cause inflation to rise again, Colijn said. His bank is among those expecting the ECB to start lowering interest rates next year, possibly before the summer.