Prime Minister Shinzo Abe visited Fukushima Prefecture on Sunday to check the progress of reconstruction in areas damaged by the March 2011 earthquake, tsunami and nuclear crisis.

Abe visited Namie, a town that was evacuated following the crisis at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant and that only offers restricted access to residents.

"I would like to step up efforts to rebuild" the area, Abe said, responding to a request from Namie Mayor Tamotsu Baba to hasten infrastructure work.

The entire town is designated as a no-go zone, but the boundaries of the restricted area will be narrowed April 1, with residents to be allowed to visit some parts temporarily.

Abe also visited Tomioka, where the no-go zone will be narrowed from Monday, and heard complaints from farmers who detailed fears about radioactive contamination of their produce.