SABIC CEO says impact of coronavirus will be more significant in second quarter

FILE PHOTO: Saudi Basic Industries Corporation (SABIC) Vice Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Yousef Abdullah al-Benyan speaks during a press conference held in the SABIC HQ in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia October 28, 2018. REUTERS/Faisal Al Nasser

RIYADH (Reuters) - Saudi Basic Industries Corp (SABIC) 2010.SE expects a more significant impact on its business from the coronavirus pandemic in the second quarter, its chief executive said on Monday after the company reported a loss in the first quarter.

Yousef al-Benyan told an earnings briefing that the company expects current circumstances will last until the end of 2020, as the coronavirus has hurt global economic growth and dampened energy prices, leading to a decline in petrochemical prices.

SABIC, the world’s fourth-biggest petrochemicals firm, reported a net loss in the first quarter of 950 million riyals ($252.89 million), citing impairment losses on assets and lower demand for its products in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.

Reporting by Marwa Rashad; Writing by Saeed Azhar