* MSCI Asia ex-Japan falls 0.4 pct, Nikkei falls 0.2 pct
* China exports resilient, imports undershoot forecast
* Euro off two-year lows but remains vulnerable
* Brent slumps as Norway govt orders settlement to dispute
* European shares likely mixed
By Chikako Mogi
TOKYO, July 10 (Reuters) - Asian shares fell on Tuesday after Chinese import growth slowed sharply in June, underscoring weakness in domestic demand in the world's second-largest economy and adding to concerns about deteriorating global economic conditions.
China's imports rose 6.3 percent in June from a year ago, less than half the forecast of a 12.7 percent rise, while exports grew 11.3 percent on the year, faster than expectations for a 9.9 percent increase.
Demand for Chinese goods in June was well off the historical pace in part because the U.S. economy has not fully recovered, a senior Chinese customs official said on Tuesday.
Risk sentiment will likely remain firmly in check, with investors now turning to China's second-quarter gross domestic product report due on Friday, which was expected to show the lowest growth in at least three years.
"It isn't changing the overall picture of global growth, which is going backwards for the time being," said Andrew Taylor, market strategist at GFT Markets.
European stocks were seen mixed, with financial spreadbetters calling the main indexes in London, Paris and Frankfurt to open between down 0.1 percent and up 0.1 percent. U.S. stock futures fell 0.4 percent, suggesting a weaker start on Wall Street.
MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan gave up slight early gains to ease 0.4 percent, after slumping 1.6 percent on Monday for its biggest daily loss in about a month.
Japan's Nikkei average fell 0.2 percent, reversing a rise in the morning as the Chinese data weighed on the market.
Hong Kong and Shanghai shares also relinquished early gains, with Shanghai stocks falling 0.3 percent and Hong Kong down 0.2 percent after the Chinese numbers. Both markets suffered their steepest drops in five weeks on Monday, after weaker-than-expected inflation data raised fears of softening consumer demand in China.
"The more worrying sign is the slowdown in imports ... It reinforces worries about the slowdown in the Chinese economy," said Li Wei, an economist at Standard Chartered in Shanghai, adding that in the short term, stock markets will continue to face downward pressures.
The Chinese trade data pushed Australian shares into negative territory, down 0.5 percent from up 0.2 percent prior to the release, while hurting the Australian dollar, which eased to around $1.0165 from $1.0203.
China is Australia's single largest market and the Australian dollar is typically influenced by investor risk appetite.
While the data did little to ease worries about fragile economic conditions around the world, it was insufficient to decisively tip the risk balance towards a hard landing, said Hirokazu Yuihama, a senior strategist at Daiwa Securities.
"Firm exports suggest external demand, probably mainly in the United States, has emerged from its worst phase and is picking up, partially offsetting weak domestic demand," Yuihama said.
"It's not a bad enough number to heighten the risk of a hard landing and is not likely to prompt much further selling in the markets, which have already priced in concerns over slowing growth," he said.
EUROPE REMAINS SORE POINT
Brent crude shed 2 percent as China, the world's second biggest crude consumer, imported 15 percent less in June than a year earlier, and the Norwegian government intervened in a labour strike and ordered a last-minute settlement to prevent a full closure of its oil industry.
Brent was down 1.7 percent at $98.59 a barrel and U.S. crude slipped 1.1 percent at $85.01 a barrel.
As nervous investors sought the safety of the U.S. dollar, the dollar index -- measured against a basket of key currencies -- firmed 0.1 percent, while gold edged down 0.1 percent at $1,585.79 an ounce.
The euro, which hit a two-year low of $1.2225 in early Monday Asian trade, fell 0.2 percent to $1.2285.
Europe's three-year debt crisis has dragged down economic activity around the world, ushering in the current deterioration in global growth and undermining investor appetite for risk.
Euro zone ministers agreed early on Tuesday to grant Spain until 2014 to reach its deficit reduction targets in exchange for further budget savings, and set the parameters of an aid package for Madrid's ailing banks.
But they failed to pin down details of bank rescues and emergency bond-buying that are of imminent concern to markets.
"This weighs on risk appetite and translates to a stronger dollar and a stronger yen. I think that trend is likely to continue in the days ahead," said Todd Elmer, currency strategist for Citi in Singapore.
Disappointment over a lack of swift follow-up action has pushed Spanish 10-year yields back above the 7 percent level, seen as unsustainable, and lifted yields in Italy and France.
Despite sluggish risk appetite, Asian credit markets firmed slightly, pushing the spread on the iTraxx Asia ex-Japan investment-grade index narrower by 2 basis points.