Arabic term meanings transport, transfer. In financial context debt transfer or more narrow money transfer. It is subject to the rules of debt transfer, so-called Hawaladar, money transfer agents, do not per se follow Islamic rules and are not part of the Islamic finance industry, e.g. Western Union or Moneygram.
The definition in the famous Ottoman Mejelle: “„If the debtor who makes a hawale says to his creditor, 'I have transferred (hawale) you to the account of such a one,' and they also accept, the hawale is concluded.“ The Mejelle, 680.