History of Adriatic Shipyard Bijela

TimeLine - major years in Adriatic Shipyard history


The development path of the Shipyard started on 1927 owing to reputable and hardworking people from Bijela, by founding of shipbuilding workshop on the cape Pijavica. In the first year of work “Pijavica” was employing 10 and in the next 1928, 11 workers. The Shipyard was covering the area of 1000 square meters. In this “square” as people from Bijela used to call it, the repair of wooden ships was carried out, fishing vessels and sailing boats were built. Till 1940, in the Shipyard there were built 30 new vessels and repaired far more than 100 sailing ships and 12 steamboats.


At the end of August 1944, occupation forces mined the convoy of former Yugoslav navy that was in the close vicinity of the Shipyard along the main quayside in the whole length. The only undamaged area was a part of former wharf but upon liberation of our area, works on repair of smaller vessels have started, needed for navigation within the bay. At the beginning of 1946, under initiative of survived workers, the Shipyard “Pijavica” renewed its activities.

1951 - 1955

In 1955 the industrial circle was extended into cape hinterlands and than the name “Bokeljska pobuna” (Rebellion of Boka) was changed in Shipyard “Bijela”. Since than capacities have been extended, new machines and plants were purchased, leaving slowly the building of wooden vessels that used to be the backbone of production orientation from its beginnings. The building of steel vessels for commercial purposes in the Bay of Bokakotorska has started.


Till the end of 1959 several new steel vessels were made, passenger – cargo vessels. The following phase was marked by construction of the first floating dock with lifting capacity of 10.000 tons. The construction of the same was lasting from 1960 to 1968 and it was the first newly made object of that kind in Yugoslavia. Own workforce carried the construction along with fitting of the whole equipment in a quality manner. Working on such challenging task, workers of the Shipyard have confirmed their high competency and have proved that are capable to perform the most complicated work tasks.

1969 - 1976

A decade of development from 1969 to 1979 is characterized by greater orientation towards repair of vessels. Domestic and international ship owners have been consigning more and more their vessels for repair to “Bijela”. In development plans of municipal authorities in these years the Shipyard had priority position and within maritime economy and development plans of Montenegro it took up a stance among activities of common interest for development of the Republic.


Facilities of the Shipyard became too tight and thus a decision was made to enlarge repair capacities by purchase of new dock. The Contract on construction of the dock was concluded with renowned German company GHH with construction term of 14 months. The dock was finished within record term and the same was put into operation at the beginning of 1976. It was the biggest floating dock in former Yugoslavia, with a lifting capacity of 33000 tons, having a value of 44 millions of German Marks. In the same year ended a construction of wharfage, in the length of two times 300 meters with portal crane of 25 tons and 36 new machines were put in function with employment of 900 workers.


It was Sunday, 15th April 1979, 07:19:50 CET. A destroying earthquake befell Montenegro. The Shipyard suffered great material damage whilst it was destroyed or sunk in the sea more than 80% of its functionally linked facilities.


Reconstruction of the Shipyard completed in 1985, the building was carried out in accordance with requirements of sensitive seismic areas, using the method in accordance with the latest technological recommendations. In addition to recovery from the earthquake, the next stage of Shipyard’s development is characterized by full commitment towards ship repair.


After quite successful period and good business results, difficulties occurred again in 1992 by introducing UN sanctions to FR of Yugoslavia. Upon suspension of sanctions in 1995, the Shipyard started to work but than under new name Adriatic Shipyard Bijela. With new management team, aggressive marketing onset, competitive prices and quality, the Shipyard has succeeded to push its way in the world market.

Nowadays ...

Adriatic Shipyard Bijela is nowadays a modern business system operating successfully, owing to clearly set business targets, permanent incentive to creativity and care on high work quality, well chosen orientation, work program and long-term human resource policy.