Burundi's annual inflation rate dropped to 6.5 percent last year from 10.5 percent 2009 thanks to lower food costs, but prices will likely rise again in 2011, the country's statistics board said on Friday.

Prices of food products were generally low in 2010 compared to 2009, said Elie Ndiririkirirenza, head of the price index at the Institute of Economic Studies and Statistics(ISTEEBU).

The price of rice for instance, the most consumed food in Burundi, decreased by half last year, he told Reuters.

However, ISTEEBU says the increasing cost of essential commodities would drive up consumer prices in the land-locked nation this year, although the magnitude of the increase would largely depend on the price of oil on global markets.

The central African nation's government has revised fuel prices higher four times since mid 2010.

The International Monetary Fund expects Burundi's 2011 inflation rate will tip 8 percent. It projects that the economy will grow by 4.5 percent in 2011, from 3.9 percent in 2010.