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Saudi chemical giant registers $500m in losses 

The headquarters of Saudi Basic Industries Corporation (SABIC) in the Saudi capital Riyadh on 17 January 2016. [FAYEZ NURELDINE/AFP via Getty Images]
The headquarters of Saudi Basic Industries Corporation (SABIC) in the Saudi capital Riyadh on 17 January 2016. [FAYEZ NURELDINE/AFP via Getty Images]

Saudi Basic Industries Corporation (SABIC) yesterday said it had suffered quarterly losses for the third time “due to low sales and impairments”.

SABIC, the world’s fourth largest chemical company, said recently it had incurred a loss of 2.22 billion riyals ($592 million) in the April to June quarter, compared to a net profit of 2.03 billion riyals ($541 million) in the corresponding quarter last year.  

The company’s CEO, Yousef Al-Benyan, told reporters that SABIC’s sales had seen a “significant decline” due to the “coronavirus pandemic impacting the supply and demand balance for our critical products and the resultant effect on prices and margins.”

Al-Benyan pointed out that there was a “potential implication on future demand driven by uncertainty we are seeing in the energy market,” adding that sales would “improve” but “current indications of a second or third wave of COVID-19 has put more pressure on demand.”

“Our view is that the second half is going to be more or less an average of the first half or a little bit better,” he noted.

SABIC’s profits were reported to have been dropping even before the pandemic due to a sharp fall in international prices. The company posted a net profit of $1.5 billion in 2019 compared to $5.74 billion the previous year.

READ: US sends oil shipment to Saudi Arabia 

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