Eurozone inflation remained unchanged at a lower than expected 0.2% in December, adding pressure on the European Central Bank to ramp up its efforts to boost the economy in Europe.

The data from the EU's Eurostat statistics agency came in below analysts' forecast of 0.3% inflation for the period, which is itself much lower than the ECB's official two-percent target.

ECB president Mario Draghi last month disappointed market hopes with a more limited than expected bid to revive the struggling eurozone economy given low inflation levels across the 19 countries that share the euro.

But ECB executive board member Yves Mersch last week said policymakers have "by no means used up all our ammunition", in an interview with the International Bankers Forum.

Inflation in December was again dragged down by energy prices, led by oil, but this drop slowed sharply to 5.9% annually instead of 7.3% the previous month, the data showed.

Core inflation, which strips out fluctuating energy prices as well as alcool and tobacco, remained stable at 0.9% from November.

Central bankers of the 19-member eurozone are eager to fight falling prices because they can be poisonous for the economy, creating a vicious circle of falling demand and fewer jobs.

While falling prices might appear to be good for consumers, deflation can last if consumers delay purchases in the hope of lower prices later, which in turn prompts companies to hold off investment.