Saudi Basic Industries Corporation (Sabic) has reported a 23 per cent fall in profit for the third quarter of the year as a result of a slump in petrochemicals prices.

The company, which is the largest petrochemicals firm in the world by market value, reported profit of SR6.3bn ($1.68bn), compared with SR8.2bn for the same period of last year.

Sabic said in a statement that profit had fallen due to “lower average selling prices”, despite an increase in production volumes.

The company is one of the biggest in the kingdom and a key part of the government’s drive to diversify the economy away from oil.