South Africa says it has signed a deal with Russia under which Russia's state-owned nuclear company, Rosatom, will provide it with up to eight nuclear reactors.

South Africa's energy ministry said the deal was signed on Monday on the sidelines of a conference of the U.N. atomic agency in Vienna. It did not say how much the project would cost.

Tina Joemat-Pettersson, the South African energy minister, says in a statement that the project will be completed by 2030.

The energy ministry says on its website that South Africa already has two nuclear reactors that generate 6 percent of its electricity. The country relies heavily on coal for its energy needs, and its electrical grid is under severe strain.