Shares related to the city of Tianjin extended the week's strong gains on speculation that the port city may obtain approval for a free-trade zone. Real-estate developer Tianjin Jinbin surged 10 percent while cargo shipper Tianjin Marine Shipping added nearly 6 percent.
Sydney eases 0.1%
Australia's benchmark index pared losses on the back of September's jobs report, a key factor in the Reserve Bank of Australia's policy decisions. The nation's unemployment rate came in better-than-expected at 5.6 percent but only 9,100 jobs were created, missing estimates for a 15,000 gain.
"While employment growth is weak, the report is consistent with the RBA remaining on hold with respect to interest rates. Jobs growth is probably no weaker than the RBA had been allowing for, the labor market is a lagging indicator of economic conditions and will be the last to turn around," said Shane Oliver, head of investment strategy and chief economist at AMP Capital in a note.
Miners weighed after copper prices hovered near a three-week low and as spot gold approached $1,300, extending Wednesday's 1 percent decline. Atlas Iron shed nearly 4 percent while Kingsgate Consolidated declined 3 percent.
(Read more: Gold bull: 20% rallycoming for bullion)
The nation's sixth largest bank, Bank of Queensland ended 7 percent higher after swinging to a profit for the twelve months to the end of August, after recording a loss the year before.
South Korea's benchmark index ended just below the flatline after the Bank of Korea left its base rate steady for a fifth straight month at its October policy meeting, as widely expected.
Blue-chip automakers led the gains with Hyundai Motor higher by nearly 3 percent while Kia Motors tacked on 1.6 percent.
The index played catch-up with the region after being shut on Wednesday for a public holiday.
India's benchmark index bounced between gains and losses after climbing to a new three-week high above the 20,280 mark in early trade. Investors are awaiting industrial output data, due on Friday for further trading cues.
— By CNBC.com's Nyshka Chandran. Follow her on Twitter @NyshkaCNBC