The total combined profits of Saudi Arabian companies plunged by SAR6.24 billion or 22 per cent in the first quarter of the current year, a new report reveals.
The value of all Saudi companies’ profits in the first three months of the current year stood at SAR21.9bn compared with SAR28.14bn in the same period last year.
The slump in profits of all Saudi firms was primarily driven by a sharp decline of 53 per cent in the profits of the petrochemical sector, the earnings of which stood at SAR4.38bn in the first quarter of this year compared with SAR9.32bn in the same period last year.
However, this sector contributed 20 per cent to the total value of Saudi companies’ profits in the first quarter but is still way below the 33 per cent contribution last year.
The banking sector accounted for a major chunk of the overall profits at 51 per cent. The sector’s profits increased by five per cent to SAR11.16bn compared with SAR10.6bn in the same period, last year.
The telecom sector accounted for only nine per cent of the total profits after reporting a 44 per cent drop in profits in the first quarter.
The telecommunication company, Mobily, suffered losses of SAR199 million compared with profits of SAR1.6bn in the same period last year.
The Saudi Telecom Company was the only telecom company to report profits of SAR2.504bn by the end of this quarter.
The cement sector accounted for eight per cent of the total value of profits compared with a contribution of six per cent in the same period last year.