Chinese shares slid on Friday as investors digested China's underwhelming exports for December and disappointing full-year trade figures.
Chinese exports in December decreased 6.1 percent on-year in dollar-denominated terms, while imports rose 3.1 percent from the previous year.
Both figures were lower than forecasts by a Reuters poll of economists, which had expected exports to fall by 3.5 percent and imports to rise 2.4 percent. For the full year, China's exports dropped 7.7 percent on-year in dollar terms and imports fell 5.5 percent.
In South Korea, the Kospi lost 0.5 percent or 10.35 points at 2,076.8, after the Bank of Korea left benchmark rates unchanged at 1.25 percent, which was aligned with expectations by a Reuters poll of analysts, as it awaits for more policy clarity out of the U.S. under a Trump administration.
Samsung Group leader Jay Lee left the special prosecutor's office early on Friday after being held for more than 22 hours for questioning over bribery suspicions in a corruption scandal, involving President Park Geun-hye.
The special prosecutor's office is considering whether to seek an arrest warrant for Lee and will decide in two days, a spokesman for the investigation team said on Friday, Reuters reported.