Definition of narco-state in US English:

narco-state

noun

  • A state whose economy is dependent on the trade in illegal drugs.

    ‘he turned his nation into a narco-state by giving drug cartels free rein to produce and ship cocaine’
    • ‘The island has become a narco-state and the people living there are not seeing it.’
    • ‘What this war has achieved is to restore a compliant narco-state, headed by a US appointed puppet.’
    • ‘It's now labeled a narco-state in which drug lords and traffickers control both the economy and law enforcement.’
    • ‘I am now living in one of the busiest narco-states in the world.’
    • ‘But the new slew of charges helped shed light on an impoverished country, which international observers say has long been a narco-state.’
    • ‘Under him, the country visibly turned into a narco-state with organised criminal gangs.’
    • ‘There is a real danger that if the battles with gangs in the region aren't won, these countries could become narco-states.’
    • ‘People were murdered with impunity and worse than this, it became a narco-state.’
    • ‘These horrible acts of violence must be understood within the context of an increasingly vile and murderous narco-state.’

Origin

1970s: from narco- + state.

Pronunciation

narco-state

/ˈnɑrkoʊˌsteɪt//ˈnärkōˌstāt/