[also spelt Havala, Hawallah or Hawalah]
An alternative remittance system. In its current usage in Hindi, Urdu and Arabic Hawala means "trust" and "reference". The term is interchangeably used with the term hundi, which has the meanings "cheque" or "bill of exchange" and reffers to a means of transferring money based on trust or an appropriate reference. Hawala is a trust-based system of money transfer associated with the Indian Sub-Continent and the Persian (Arabian) Gulf and is liable to abuse and exploitation by money launderers. Hawala works fast and, leaves either no paper trail or a minimal and confusing one and gives returns much higher than conventional banking.