As the latest food inflation numbers rose to 16.74 per cent, Plan panel Deputy Chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia on Thursday said the rate of price rise in edible items is quite high, but will now start coming down.

“It is true that the year-on-year food inflation rate is actually still quiet high. But the inflation rate will now start coming down now,” Mr. Ahluwalia told mediapersons here.

Food inflation stood at an elevated level of 16.74 per cent for the week ended May 29, despite moderation from around 20 per cent in December.

“It is our expectation that by the end of the year we will see it coming down to around 6 per cent or so,” he said.

Overall wholesale price-based inflation stood at over 9.5 per cent in April and RBI expects it to come down to 5.5 per cent by this fiscal end. However, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh expects it to decline to 5-6 per cent by this calendar year itself. The inflation data for May will be announced on Monday.

More In: Economy | Business