Production costs of cement in Saudi Arabia could increase by 15 to 20 Saudi riyals per tonne if companies had to pay double the fuel prices, Saudi financial news portal Argaam reported, citing a SICO Bank report.

The report said the higher fuel prices could push profitability sharply down unless the firms can offset the impact through a proportional price rise.

Saudi Arabia is the second largest cement producing country in the Middle East, with nearly 74 million tonnes of annual cement capacity, according to Egyptian financial services company EFG-Hermes.

(Writing by SA Kader; Editing by Anoop Menon)