More human capital does not guarantee expansion. While the French fertility rate stood at 1.96 and Germany’s reached 1.5 (2015), German GDP growth is estimated to reach 1.9% in 2017 and 2018. The forecast for France is 1.2%*.
Why is that? First, population growth has picked up in Germany. Second, people must work to drive potential growth. Germany’s employment rate for the 15-64 age group reached 74.7% in 2016. France’s is 64.2%**.