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Banana republics

any of the small countries in the tropics, especially in the Western Hemisphere, whose economies are largely dependent on fruit exports, tourism, and foreign investors.
(derogatory) a small country, esp in Central America, that is politically unstable and has an economy dominated by foreign interest, usually dependent on one export, such as bananas

“small Central American state with an economy dependent on banana production,” 1901, American English.

A term describing any of several small nations in Latin America that have economies based on a few agricultural crops.

Note: The term banana republic is often used in a disparaging sense; it suggests an unstable government.

noun phrase

A small country, esp Central American, dominated by foreign companies

[1930s+; fr the fact that such places were typically under the control of the United Fruit Company and grew bananas]


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