Power-starved South Africa plans to increase its nuclear reactor capacity and energy companies from around the world are lining up to be involved.

The country's energy minister, Dipuo Peters, says the project has an estimated cost of 300 billion rand (more than $40 million), but it is still unclear what contracts will be offered or how much of the business will be set aside for local companies.

Ian Hore-Lacy, spokesman for the London-based World Nuclear Association, which represents the industry, says South Africa is "one of several significant prospects on the radar."

Russia's State Atomic Energy Corporation held a seminar in Johannesburg in early April to introduce itself to South Africa, and sent a vice president back later in April for more talks.