Energy giant Saudi Aramco posted a net profit of $6.6 billion for the three months to June 30, a drop of 73 percent due to sharply lower oil prices, despite optimism on the oil market’s “partial recovery.”
"Strong headwinds from reduced demand and lower oil prices are reflected in our second quarter results," Aramco's chief executive Amin Nasser said in a statement.
"Yet we delivered solid earnings because of our low production costs, unique scale, agile workforce and unrivalled financial and operational strength."
Aramco's net profit for the first half of the year also slumped by 50.5 percent to $23.2 billion, compared to $46.9 billion in the same period last year.
By contrast, Aramco's results reflected its "financial resilience", Nasser said.
Nasser also voiced optimism over what he called a "partial recovery in the energy market" amid an easing of virus restrictions in some countries.
Oil prices dropped to a two-decade low below $20 a barrel in April and May as the coronavirus dampened demand, before recovering to around $44 a barrel after the OPEC+ producers agreed to record output cuts.
Following the move, Saudi oil production dropped to 7.5 million barrels per day in June, compared to last year's average of 10 million bpd.
Aramco's profits were also impacted by the losses posted by the Saudi Basic Industries Co. (SABIC), the petrochemicals giant it acquired for $69 billion in a deal completed this year.